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Letter, 10/18: Making Lincoln safe for all

Letter, 10/18: Making Lincoln safe for all

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Stand in for Nebraska, a human rights organization; Change Now LNK, a policy advocacy and education group; the Black Leaders Movement; the YWCA Lincoln; and ACLU of Nebraska support the Black Clergy of Lincoln’s recommendations they made on Sept. 29 for safety in our community.

We understand that the mayor and police chief have met with the Black Clergy and appear to be listening.

But we wonder if the message is being taken seriously. Our groups and city officials all have the same goals in mind: safety in Lincoln.

Of these leaders, who knows best the experiences of Black people in Lincoln? It’s the Black Clergy, who have lived being Black in Lincoln and hear the concerns of congregants.

The Black Clergy of Lincoln in their press conference thanked the mayor and police chief for the opportunities to come together up to this point and at the same time concluded what’s been done is not enough. The Black Clergy warn it is still not safe.

Still needed are a complete ban on chokeholds; more specific definitions regarding legal force, excessive force, and reasonable belief; more external review by citizens and governmental agencies of police use of force in any capacity; more independence and investigative authority for the Citizens Advisory Police Board; more use of deescalation language throughout the policing policies, and public support for LB1222, the Municipal Police Oversight Act.

In solidarity with the Black Clergy of Lincoln, we will not rest until Lincoln is safe for all.

Stephanie Bondi, Lincoln

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