Are there any elements of the consent decree that you would want to change? If so, what changes would you make? 


Mayoral Questionnaire
The Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) should take civilian allegations against officers seriously as a predictor of problematic officer behavior. New, promising research has established that officers who receive multiple complaints from civilians are a risk to the community and police efforts. (See Rozema, Kyle and Schanzenbach, Max, Good Cop, Bad Cop: Using Civilian Allegations to Predict Police Misconduct, Institute for Policy Research, Northwestern University, August 5, 2018)  The study shows that one to five percent of CPD officers, based on civilian complaints, have engaged in misconduct that cost the City millions of dollars in payouts. The authors concluded that removing the worst one percent of officers (120 in total) from regular civilian contact—either by reassignment or termination—and replacing them with an average officer would have saved Chicago over $6 million in payouts over the years 2009 to 2014 (not including legal fees). Money saved should be reinvested in officer well-being programs. 
Also, the time has come to revive the principles and practices of community policing. The Department Justice noted Chicago has fallen behind in this effort.  The case for community policing was laid out succinctly. In another landmark study, The Challenge of Crime in a Free Society, published in February 1967 by the President’s Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of. The Commission diagnosed the problem between the community and police departments as follows: 
“Citizen hostility toward the police is every bit as disruptive of peace and order, of course, as police indifference to or mistreatment of citizens. It is so obvious as almost to be a truism that residents will not obtain the police protection they badly want and need until policemen feel that their presence is welcome and that their problems are understood.  However, in the effort to achieve this state of affairs, the duty of taking the initiative clearly devolves on the police, both because they are organized and disciplined and because they are public servants sworn to protect every part of the community.  It is an urgent duty. Social tensions are growing and crime rates are mounting. Police agencies cannot preserve the public peace and control crime unless the public participates more fully than it now does in law enforcement. Bad community feeling does more than create tensions and engender actions against the police that in turn may embitter policemen and trigger irrational responses from them. It stimulates crime.” 

The President’s Commission noted that all police operations and administration should be guided by the principles of community relations. 

“Community relations are not exclusively a matter of special programs, but a matter that touches on all aspects of police work.  They must play a part in the selection, training, deployment, and promotion of personnel, in the execution of field procedures, in staff policymaking and planning, in the enforcement of departmental discipline, and in the handling of citizen’s complaints.” 

Lastly, the President’s Commission emphasized the role of changing attitudes among police officers as a necessary step to improving community relations, 

“Improving community relations involves not only instituting programs and changing procedures and practices, but re-examining fundamental attitudes.  The police will have to learn to listen patiently and understandingly to people who are openly critical of them or hostile to them, since those people are precisely the ones with whom relations need to be improved.” 

These principles are as valid today as they were in 1967.  As Mayor, I will work with CPD to re-engage officers and residents with the principles and practices of community policing.  In addition to community policing, I will have a complete analysis of the CPD from the top to the bottom, looking at its organizational structure, managerial techniques, number of districts, number of supervisors to patrolmen, and the investigation techniques to ensure they are using 21st century policing strategies.


Mayoral Questionnaire

Additional community input is needed on CPD. At the very least greater steps must be taken to fire any officer who disables a recording device.




Mayoral Questionnaire

We would also implement changes in the city’s officer recruitment policy, so as to ensure that only those applicants with integrity, a respect for local communities, and an understanding of and willingness to change the long-standing culture of abuse, torture, racial discrimination, and disrespect would be admitted. Community policing would be another priority, with officers being encouraged to get to know local community members. New recruits in particular must be provided ample opportunities to familiarize themselves with the locals they will be serving, so as to decrease any hidden discomfort or aversions.




Mayoral Questionnaire

I believe that city residents need a sense of safety in every home, every street, and at all times. To achieve this, I believe we need to stem the gun trade through Federal collaboration that will pressure surrounding states to enact more protective gun laws. But ultimately, to reduce overall violence, I believe we need to create more trust and partnerships throughout our city. We need our communities to have a stronger sense of trust in the city itself and in all city employees.

On multiple levels, we need to think much more broadly in the city about our approaches to justice. We cannot see the solution to the problem as simply more enforcement or more legislation. That results in more people being jailed, more families disrupted, and more people who return to the community with a criminal record.

Like the War on Drugs, simply making harsher penalties for gun-related offenses will only result in more poor residents being placed behind bars without addressing any of the root causes of why people are carrying a gun in the first place. Many young people in our neighborhoods carry a gun because they fear and don’t trust that the police will protect them. They feel they need to take matters into their own hands by carrying a gun.

We need to do everything we can to better understand who would benefit from diversion programs, and do our best to divert those who commit a weapons offense into these programs. We need to connect offenders with resources that will place them on a better path. Addressing our violence issues will not be easily fixed by any one approach. Building trust of residents in city employees will require a lot of work.

We need transformative relations between the police and the community, unlike any other city in the country. We need to untangle the history of oppression and find restorative solutions. All stakeholders need to be part of the conversation, and in restorative ways, including the Fraternal Order of the Police and those community members who have committed crimes or otherwise who are likely to get caught up in the criminal justice system. There must be consensus across stakeholders, and a recognition that the current path is bad for both the Chicago police and the communities they serve.

In other words, we have long been faced with severe tensions. We need our police to act more like partners, like real community members. There needs to be new forms of accountability for those police officers get caught up on the wrong side of brutal and ineffective culture. I believe I have realistic optimism and connections with diverse groups and the faith that different groups can get together for some hard and serious conversations and negotiations to make everyone feel safer, build a collective trust, and reduce all forms of crime. The consent decree will help, particularly if strengthened. We will need many more restorative steps beyond those currently specified.




Mayoral Questionnaire

60/40 Plan - There is a major tension between our communities and our police department. This tension only benefits criminals. To build the trust between our communities and police, this policy will be enacted: In order to police in a given district, 60% of the police have to live in the District. By living in the district, police will be seen not as outsiders, but instead as community members who know the residents, who will be raising a family within the district (thereby wanting their neighborhood to be a safe environment for all), and who will be investing in the district. No other candidate has this idea.


Mayoral Questionnaire
As set forth in my public safety plan, I have made a series of recommendations for reforming CPD. These include, but are not limited to, implementing civilian oversight of CPD, training officers on interacting with youth, implementing a co-responder system in which mental health professionals work with OEMC and CPD to link individuals to community-based treatment options, and expanding efforts to diversify CPD, including the hiring of a chief diversity officer.


Mayoral Questionnaire

I want the Chicago Police Department to reinstate the Strategic Policing Strategy that I implemented as Superintendent. That crime reduction strategy resulted in a 37% drop in crime, the lowest murder rates in our city since 1965, and a dramatic reduction of complaints against officers as well as police-related shootings. Moreover, we reprioritized the department’s enforcement strategies to cut mass incarceration. That policy shift helped CPD increase gun arrests while cutting the volume of overall arrests. It came as no surprise that the majority of our policing strategy was used to craft President Obama’s final report on 21st Century Policing.

However, as long as the Chicago Police Department is politicized and micromanaged by City Hall, I believe it is more critical that we implement judicial oversight over the City Council, where more than one-third of all aldermen have been indicted and/or convicted of serious crimes since 1972 and hundreds of thousands of dollars in illegal campaign contributions have been exposed. I am calling for a consent decree between the Chicago City Council and the citizens of the City of Chicago that provides guidelines on TIF spending, which has been heretofore executed illegally and government bonds, which have been issued so irresponsibly it may rise to the level of criminal breach of fiduciary duty. I am seriously concerned by City Council’s and the mayor’s corporate counsel’s process for police shooting settlements. I know these settlements are political and perhaps illegal. It has to stop. Purported agreements between City Hall and CPS where Chicago City government would not investigate sexual abuse cases of CPS students but allow CPS to conduct internal investigations are so egregious that we can no longer simply send officials to jail; obviously, this does not work. We need citizen’s insight into and court oversight over the work aldermen do at city hall, in their ward offices, and at their fundraising events.


Mayoral Questionnaire

I would begin by fully implementing the consent decree, including the reforms to implement crisis intervention training, expand community policing, and develop an early warning system for problem officers. I also want to expand diversion programs that allow officers to focus on violent individuals and take a balanced approach to reforming police disciplinary procedures.


Mayoral Questionnaire
As Mayor, I will ensure that in accordance with the consent decree, CPD conducts a complete upgrading of training materials, methods and field training supervision, as well as increases the number of mandatory in-service training hours. Additionally, CPD must to ensure that each level of training, pre-service and in-service include interaction with the communities that an officer serves, which I will call for if elected. Along with training that involves the community, I will advocate for more resources for the Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy or CAPS, which is CPD’s primary community policing program. The foundation of the CAPS program is the beat meeting where community residents and beat officers meet to discuss neighborhood crime issues and form strategies to solve them. Additionally, CAPS helps integrate other social services and city agencies that may be useful in addressing neighborhood crime before it happens. I will ensure that trained mental health personnel, in collaboration with the city’s Department of Mental Health and Office of Emergency Management, participate, and in some cases lead, the response to mental health crisis cases. The CPD should not be the city’s primary first responders to mental illness. I support ending use of the CPD Gang Database, which unfairly criminalizes Black and Latinx individuals when gang designations prevents them from securing jobs and other opportunities.




Mayoral Questionnaire

My public safety plan includes staffing police with enough resources and supervision (sergeants and training officers) to ensure that there is beat integrity, which is critical to effective community policing, and effective personnel oversight and management, which is critical to accountability. My plan also calls for expanded training to address all the deficiency areas identified in the consent decree and to ensure that training is redundant, which is critical to training effectiveness. A special focus of this training will be de-escalation and CIT (Crisis Intervention Training) training when officers encounter individuals who have mental health illnesses. A part of my plan is also to re-open mental health centers and to ensure that there is a community mental health center in every police district and that those centers work with the police department on not only training, but to provide support. My plan also includes ensuring that there is comprehensive and redundant training, as mandated by the consent decree.  Further, properly supplying officers with non-lethal resources such as TASERs and ensuring that police officers have working radios and cameras.  This will additionally contribute to positive change. My plan also includes creating a pipeline so that the next generation of police officers come from the community by partnering with the high school ROTC programs and military high schools. Those schools annually serve a population of 9,000 students, 90% of whom are Black and Latino. I intend that the next generation of all first responders be drawn in large part from the community through those programs. I will also review use of and criteria for the current CPD gang database.