Read a PDF of our statement here.
LDF Provides Feedback on Independent Monitor’s Draft Plan for First Year of Implementing Policing Reform Agreement in Baltimore
Today, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) sent a letter to Kenneth Thompson, Baltimore’s independent monitor overseeing the January 2017 policing reform consent decree, providing feedback on the draft First-Year Monitoring Plan and Budget for implementing the agreement. In November, LDF offered 20 policy reform priorities for the first year, all but one of which were included in the monitor’s draft plan.
LDF’s letter today notes that the draft plan and budget correctly prioritize changes to BPD policies and training in the first year, which will make it easier to assess the impact on policing practices in subsequent years. The draft plan also offers many opportunities for the public to comment on policy changes before they are finalized and implemented, a key concern for LDF. LDF used this latest letter to present additional recommendations for promoting transparency and increasing the public’s involvement in policing reform efforts during the first year of the consent decree, including:
1) Providing More Information on the Annual Budget, Including the Team’s Fundraising Efforts for the Neighborhood Liaison Initiative;
2) Hiring Well-Qualified Community Liaisons;
3) Offering Community Access to the Monitoring Team through Flexible Office Hours;
4) Allowing for Public Comment on the Selection of Vendors for the Community Survey;
5) Ensuring that Community Oversight Task Force has the Support it Needs to Carry Out its Mandate;
6) Partnering with Community Organizations to Hold Meetings on Draft and Final Policies to Allow for Constructive Feedback; and
7) Providing an Initial Assessment of BPD’s Coordination with Baltimore City School Police Force.
LDF’s letter was submitted ahead of the new public comment deadline of February 3rd. LDF encourages all Baltimore residents to review the monitor’s draft plan and budget and offer feedback. The success of the policing reform agreement hinges on the community’s continued engagement, and this is a critical way for residents to let the monitor know what’s important to Baltimoreans.
Read LDF’s letter here.
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization and has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.