Democratic White House hopeful Joe Biden expressed opposition Monday (June 8) to defunding United States police forces despite the movement gaining visibility in street protests following the death of an unarmed black man in police custody.
The Minneapolis City Council - amid anti-police-brutality protests that have spread across the globe - voted Sunday to disband the police department. "The City Council's oversight of the Minneapolis Police Department has been historically constrained by the City Charter and state law and we welcome new tools to pursue transformational, structural changes to how the City provides for public safety".
"Defund the police" was a rallying cry during the latest street protests, that occasionally spilled into violence and looting.
In response to calls for the defunding and even abolishment of police, former Ontario Provincial Police commissioner Chris Lewis said that change needs to happen in a "very methodical way" and that police remain a vital entity in controlling violent crime.
The arrest of all of the officers involved was a persistent demand of protesters who have taken to the streets of dozens of U.S. cities for the past two weeks to condemn police brutality and demand racial justice.
On Sunday, protesters in cities including Washington, New York and Winter Park, Florida, began focusing their outrage over the death of the unarmed Floyd into demands for police reform and social justice. The protest ended up outside Frey's home and he came outside to address the crowd.
That scene with the mayor, which was widely shared online, occurred during a march calling for the city to defund the police department.
Floyd, a 46 year-old African-American man, died while in Minneapolis police custody.
The woman with the microphone on stage pulled away in visceral rage, screaming "Get the [expletive] out of here", and the mob followed Frey's walk between rows of blacks who could have easily murdered him on live TV, and were shouting, "Go home, traitor, go home". And when we're done, we're not simply gonna glue it back together.
Joining in the statement were Council President Lisa Bender, Vice President Andrea Jenkins and council members Alondra Cano, Jeremiah Ellison, Cam Gordon, Jeremy Schroeder, Phillipe Cunningham and Andrew Johnson.
Bender said details of the overhaul plan needed to be discussed further, adding that she would try to shift police funding towards community based strategies. "And as for abolishing the entire police department - no, I'm not, and I'll be honest about that, too", Frey said.
"We can send a city response that that is appropriate to each situation and makes it better".
"Defunding" advocates have for years been condemning what they describe as aggressive militarised policing in the US.
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