In a new report, “The Long Game: Defund, Divest, Reform and Abolish – The resident perspective of the current debate on where we should invest our public safety dollars,” the Citizens Policing Projects shares the results of its citywide canvass conducted from June through December of 2021:
“With funding support from the Open Society Institute-Baltimore and the NAACP-LDF (Legal Defense and Education Fund) Citizens Policing Project, in Partnership with partners from the statewide collaborative, the Campaign for Justice, Safety and Jobs, endeavored to collect stories from residents of Baltimore to gain understanding of their perspectives on Public Safety in their neighborhoods,” the report says. “Where do they feel our city should be investing funds that will result lowering crime numbers and safer communities?”
The report found that about 30% of those interviewed supported the “Defund the Police” movement and that many are looking for any solution that will effectively prevent violence in their communities.
“The immediate reaction to the proposed question, ‘Do you think we should defund the police?’ usually was to emphasize how violent and dangerous our streets are currently, and we need more police to control it,” the report reads. “This is a common misconception in communities that are distraught, suffering and are looking for a solution to violence they are forced to navigate in their day-to-day life. The increasing loss of hope often leads people to seek a savior in the solution, and too often in America, people erroneously think the police are supposed to be that answer.”
Read the full report, including key recommendations, here.