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Although Austin has remained a relatively safe city, there have been far too many shootings of African American men. What kind of changes would you institute at APD to reduce the number of officer-involved shootings and reduce the degree of mistrust that exists between the African American community and the police?

Rich DePalma

City Council, District 8

Austin is known as a progressive city, but there’s more we can do to ensure every member of our community feels safe. I want to acknowledge the work that has been done¬†and also hear from stakeholders about what is missing so we can fully implement real¬†community policing that is transparent, accountable, and rebuilds trust. One immediate change that we could do is to prioritize specific spending for public safety. For example, want to increase funding for increased services by the Mobile Crisis Outreach Team so that an expert in recognizing the signs of someone in a mental health crisis can accompany an APD officer 24 hours a day. I also want to make sure funding for training such as de-escalation classes is prioritized. One change that is not funding related is a policy enforcing body cameras to be worn and be recording at all times while an officer is on duty.