A Democrat Farm-Labor Party (DFL) member of the Minnesota House of Representatives has introduced a bill that would give private citizens power to oversee the police, and punish them for wrongdoing.
“[Police Officer Standards and Training Board] (POST) directed to amend portable recording systems policy to require showing and releasing video; civilian oversight councils permitted by local governments to impose discipline on peace officers; citizen oversight councils required to provide information to POST,” says HF 2724, introduced by State Rep. Cedrick Frazier (D-District 45A).
In a public Zoom meeting Friday with the Minnesota House’s legislative People of Color and Indigenous (POCI) Caucus, Frazier explained further.
“The bill that I am carrying, and that my POCI colleagues and other DFL cohorts are supporting – that bill also addresses the recruiting and retention piece,” Frazier said. “It addresses in a way to establish a task force that would bring together stakeholders – that would be community members, that would be law enforcement, it would be legislators – to provide recommendations on what’s the best way to expand and allow for more opportunities for individuals to get involved in the progression of law enforcement.”
Frazier was referring to the state’s law enforcement shortage, which is particularly plaguing the Minneapolis metropolitan area. In just over a year after the summer 2020 riots over the death of George Floyd, nearly 300 Minneapolis police officers walked off the job, causing the city to ask the state for $27 million to hire replacements. Anti-police sentiment from Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN-05), whose congressional district spans Minneapolis, did not help.
“Part of that emphasis would be looking at, how do we best reflect the communities where the officers serve, and also, how do we make sure that communities that maybe are not so diverse have diverse officers?” he continued. “Because we know we have transient populations that travel through those communities and they should see officers that reflect their particular background.
This morning, members of the House POCI Caucus announced Reps. Esther Agbaje and Athena Hollins as new co-chairs and discussed their priorities for the 2022 #mnleg session.
Full video here: https://t.co/W4lqKCenF1
— Minnesota House DFL (@mnhouseDFL) January 27, 2022
Frazier did not return a comment request.
– – –