Author: Ana Perez

Austin City Council Stands in Solidarity with Black Lives Matter

Following last week’s public outcry at the Austin City Council’s virtual hearing, councilmembers unanimously backed new police reform and divestment resolutions.   On June 11, council took comments on five agenda items responding to police brutality against Black Austinites and Black Lives Matter demonstrators. Despite four councilmembers voicing lost confidence in Police Chief Brian Manley, these resolutions are only a first step toward racial justice in Austin. Resolutions Explained Ordinance 93 Ordinance 93 would amend the city code to create a Public Safety Committee in place of the former Judicial Committee. The Committee would have the power to review municipal...

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Austin City Council Approves Police Grant Despite Calls for Disinvestment

Over the past weeks, the nation experienced an outpouring of indignation, anguish and unity in response to the murder of Minneapolis resident George Floyd after video of a police officer kneeling on Floyd’s neck ignited a long-culminating powder keg of anger towards police forces. This powder keg of anger grew significantly during recent months following the murders of Breonna Taylor, Ahmuad Arbery and Austin resident Mike Ramos, each generating outcry against police corruption and brutality.  Following Floyd’s death, protests erupted across the nation, and as Austin residents took to the streets, they faced police officers donned in riot gear. Accounts and videos of Austin police...

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Why APD Should Embrace City Council’s Resolution to Prevent Cannabis Testing and Prosecution

Texas opened the door to a host of problems around prosecuting possession of marijuana after legislation passed in the summer of 2019. Austin has its own response to how it think police should handle possession going forward, but not everyone agrees with the City Council’s progressive stance.

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