The murder of George Floyd and subsequent international uprisings sparked local innovation and efforts to think differently about how to keep residents safe in cities, towns and villages. In the fall of 2021, after months of meetings and listening sessions, the NLC Reimagining Public Safety Task Force released two reports to support local action to transform local public safety.
The Task Force, chaired by Mayor Ras J. Baraka of Newark, NJ and Mayor David Holt of Oklahoma City, OK, was launched to provide actionable steps for municipal leaders to take on areas such as alternative and innovative response, violence prevention and reduction, jail use reduction, law enforcement accountability, public safety budgets and, most importantly, racial equity, the role of credible messengers and community engagement. The Task Force was chaired by Mayor Ras J. Baraka of Newark, NJ and Mayor David Holt of Oklahoma City, OK and was supported by the Vera Institute of Justice, Cities United, Urban Institute and John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
The Task Force had three major goals:
- Set out a 21st-century public safety agenda for America’s communities
- Highlight promising public safety and justice reform practices in municipalities, and identify key areas for improvement and opportunities to scale
- Amplify the voices of local leaders in justice reform and public safety
The Task Force released two reports to support local action to transform local public safety, A Path Towards Safe and Equitable Cities and Reimagining Public Safety, a Toolkit for Cities and towns.
“The interconnected nature of mental health, physical health, police violence, community violence and trauma has reached a boiling point and it is up to all of us as elected officials to think beyond what we have always done.”Councilmember Jamie Gauthier, Philadelphia, PA