Fund community services, address root causes of crime, increase training, reduce weapons
How is it that our city spends almost 20% of taxpayer dollars on funding the police, comparable to the amount spent on public health, paramedics, the library, social housing, parks and recreation, and employment services combined?
When you have a hammer, every problem looks like a nail, the saying goes, and the police department is too often the immediate reflex in responding to delicate issues that require a more sensitive approach.
Please reallocate police funding to:
- mental health support
- addressing poverty and homelessness
- harm reduction (incl. safe consumption sites)
- de-escalation training (regular intervals)
- anti-oppression training (regular intervals)
- require more than 13 weeks' training to become an officer
- de-weaponize police officers the way San Francisco is doing
- a community education campaign for what services people can call instead of police
- train call centre staff to redirect the response to the appropriate service staff