*Note: The following transcription is semi-verbatim. Check audio above for original sourcing.
OA: Can you hear me now? Can you guys hear me? Okay, good evening my name is Olivia and I am here tonight representing the Brighton Park Neighborhood Council Community Organization on the SouthWest Side of Chicago I'm also here in solidarity with the Bluest Lie Collaborative a high school student I work with was supposed to come here to testify and represent our organization tonight.
At the last minute her family didn't feel comfortable allowing her to come didn't feel safe allowing her to come here and speak so I can't speak for her but I am here on her behalf because their fear is very real and I feel it is something we can all agree must be all can address. Their fear is a result of the long history of violence against black and brown people in our country that is rooted in institutional and systemic racism. We see these systems of oppression play out in the numerous police shootings that have occurred in Chicago. The countless and wrongful arrest and profiling that occurs in our communities and in our nation's catastrophic immigration policies that tear immigrant families apart. Instead of empowering our communities to address these issues Alderman Ed Burk and others have introduced an ordinance that exacerbates the fear and further silences. the so called blue lives matter ordinance extends hate crime protection to police officers. This legislation will further marginalize and criminalize people of color in Chicago. When what is actually needed is a concentration on real reforms and accountability. we need independent review of police actions through a Civilian Police Accountability Council. We need timely investigation of allegations of abuse. We need retraining of our police in desclation. We need universal access to trauma informed mental health and violence prevention services and programs for youth and adult in our communities. Achieving these reforms requires maximum concentration and energy on the part of our elected officials. The blue lives matter Ordinance is a distraction and deviation from this important work. I urge you to oppose the BLMO to and support the true reform in the civilian police accountability council. Thank you!
Hello my name is Nicholas Cuba and I am here representing the organization Showing up for Racial Justice and we endorse and show up in solidarity with the bluest lie campaign demanding that the Blue Lives Matter Ordinance 4878 proposed by Alderman Burke to be rescinded. The ordinance would cover police officers and other first responders under current hate crime legislation, while there are already special protection that police officers receive under the current law and violence against police is at an all time low. The bill, a reaction to the black lives matter movement, aims to take away the power of the people of Chicago to hold police accountable through activism, actions and, advocacy. We also know that this bill will be used to disproportionately target communities of color, individuals experiencing homelessness, and individual suffering from mental illness. Under this bill a negative encounter with a police officer can lead to up to $ 25,000 fine and felony charge. The Chicago Police Department is currently under investigation by the DOJ for racially motivated police violence and police misconduct. The BlueMO would allow the CPD to avoid accountability for this state sanctioned violence against the people of Chicago by silencing those voices calling for justice don’t buy the bluest lie!
I just wanna say you guys should do something because you are letting your constituency down. I grew up in Chicago I did all the right things. I ran a business people got jealous of me. They used to follow me in the clubs, harass me. I got broken bones in my body I couldn't get doctors nor a lawyer because cops would follow me and play some game of blacklisted certain people in Chicago. They also also accused me of using a chemical and biological weapons and framed me saying I was stupid but I have proof from doctor and lab reports to prove it. You guys should really consider that if somebody was to break your bones and not get a doctor or destroy everything you have or destroy your relationship with women. Something got to be done about this right away because they destroy innocent citizens lives there are people who voted for you. Then covering up and saying “ Oh we don't do that because we have integrity” some of these guys who are working for you such as police they got other jobs and they shouldn't be working for the police. They should put them on the terrorist watch list or have some action to investigate these things. Because it's been like this for almost 20 years. I had to run to other countries just to get away from abuse while ago. I used to seriously look at media stuff and have somebody in the council that council people can address serious things that happen like I can go to a hospital and no hospital will wait on me. I have serious broken bones in my body like I have 45lbs of stuff in my body told them before but they never listen. But I got the proof. Then they break in my house go slamming around my name but I never did anything to anybody. You should take a step to do something right away because it's going to affect your automatic jobs because some of you won by like 20,000 votes 5,000 votes. CPAC can get enough voters out and you guys won't be in because we need something right now. Don't play political game because they blacklisted me something has to be done right away. Other agencies could come in because these are serious violations of other laws. Thank you very much!
I want to talk to the people in the audience. This council is going to make a decision on Police Accountability and they are going to tell you that they have solved your police brutality problem and police problem in your community. This piece of paper tells you what it is they are suggesting they are offering this piece of paper says that a community safety oversight board. The keyword is OVERSIGHT all they do is look this is not control this is suggestion. that is all it is you will still have no power. the problem with our system right now is not that you aren't seeing what is happening the problem with the system is that you have no power over any decisions. They want to offer you something to replace the powerlessness that you already have with more powerlessness. Do not accept an auditor. what does an auditor do? Looks at numbers looks at things and gives a suggestion. this is not for you to look at. we already know what the task force delivered to us. They told us that we have a racist police force didn’t we already know that. Didn't we already know we have a violent police force. Didn't we already know that they are not solving as many crimes as they could be because they are busy doing other things. we know all of this we don't need more auditing more data we already know what we need is power. Because when we saw that video fo LAquan Mcdonald we knew what we saw. it did not take us 400 days the problem is we had no power. the only proposal that is going to give you any power is CPAC. A Civilian Police Accountability Council that is it. What we are talking about is taking folks like you and I who are not affected by politics who are not worried about maintaining our jobs. We want you to say I saw that video and say “that was murder he needs to be fired immediately” and not have to worry about whether or not you making the mayor look bad whether or not he is going to support you in the next election. Whether or not the mayor that appointed you is going to let you keep your job finally they are talking about replacing IPRA understand this IPRA is just one piece of this multifaceted puzzle there is the police board and the superintendent. IPRA can say we think he's guilty and the police superintendent can say we don't and the police board can say we don't. So replacing IPRA is smoke and mirrors. We have to replace this entire system and put you (points to the crowd) in the driving seat. Thank you!
Good Evening my name is Bertha Escamilla. I have come out to hearing and heard everything about the city council and Alderman and so forth and I don't see any kind of changes that Aldermans who have been in office for 25 years let's say. I don't see any changes that have been made why should we start trusting you when you’re not doing anything to help us. You people know about the code of silence I don't want to hear that nobody knows about the code of silence. the mayor in a speech in December mentioned this and you all were there so you know what you all are accountable. For knowing about all of this when the time comes and they’re going to start pointing fingers let see who is going to go first. This is dead serious we’re not stopping we are going to continue to have the CPAC and believe me people will know we’re CPAC is from. Were going to have the power! We will have the power! And first off we're going to be putting people away you are doing wrong your going to jail that is what should be happening now but instead you people close your eyes and you dont hear dont want to hear and this has been going on too long. What are you going to do about it? You're going to sit there and just smoke and listen to us. No that isn't fair that's not what we want. That's not what you're getting paid for your getting paid to do something! What are you doing? What is the sole difference from what we're asking for than what the mayor is asking for? Ill tell you what the difference is. They don't want to have the police go to jail. They don't want their people to go to prison, they don't want them to take away their power but we will. Thank you!
Last Friday I faxed and I emailed to the Aldermen and Arena’s office a three page letter detailing my experience with IPRA and internal affairs. Was very frustrated and very disappointed and I’m going to simply ask that at this time you enter that letter into the record if possible. Thank you.
Let's see, I think we want to sort of define or look into that word ACCOUNTABILITY. Whoever signs off on the final investigation is the one that is accountable. and as long as that isn’t someone from the CPD internal affairs division like a sergeant or lieutenant then the person that is held accountable the most he has….we want to look at what's the most he has to lose and if in the last 10 years, 15 years IPRA has had 10 different leaders then someone has given up short term. If it's sergeant or a lieutenant who incidentally are the ones who are teaching the police officers on the street on the job how to do their job. They never come up and are not responsible for anything. If internal affairs handled the initial investigation and the sergeant or lieutenant has to sign off on the conclusion...and that way if it's a cover up then they are the ones who have just gambled their 20 years of pension. More specifically if the complaints you make goes to IPRA instead of internal affairs which is how everything is set up now you don't even know who it is in internal affairs who looked at it. When your initial complaint goes to IPRA, once the thing is done you can't take it to states attorney or state police you can't take it to federal court civilly or criminally. Cause they’ve already been exonerated by IPRA all you can do is complain about something like IPRA. Whether it's a CPAC or IPRA it's the same it's a matter of what do they have to lose. The ones with the most to lose would be the sergeants and lieutenants who have also been training these people. So it the first investigation is handled by internal affairs then you've got some solutions. They are always going to get to whoever is in charge of overseeing this stuff. They are always going to get to them whether they just take the job until they get caught or look for another job it's not solving anything. Some of the problems with IPRA...number 1 as Ive said turnover in the leadership has been tenfold in like 15 years. Another problem is that when a person comes to your door to investigate your complaint he probably in my experience 40 times he’s going to be a chicago police officer. He is somehow deputized by IPRA so that the records show IPRA first handling everything even though it is still the CPD that are handling it. Another catch to the system they are using now is that when you call in to make your complaints. You might talk for 10 minutes what happened and they are only allowed 200 spaces to put into the computer so they are picking out 20 words out of your 2000 or 200 words and they’re deciding that's what your complaint is. Then when the police officer comes to your door he tells you to sign the affidavit swearing that it's true or else its perjury and when you say but it doesn't say anything on the affidavit it's blank just my signature. You ask if you can see the complaint they won’t let you see it. Then you say you can't sign it unless you see the complaint then they tell you that means you’re dropping your case. You'll see a lot of cases that are dropped and that's apart of the system. the system is going to be set up so that you lose. The best you can hope for is the person who signs off on the investigation is someone with a lot to lose 20 years experience or 20 years seniority of the police force. Like a sergeant or lieutenant would be the place to start. Thank you.
My name is Sarah and this pertains to my son William who has been incarcerated we knew the cop he was a detective and merely because he won't work for him as an undercover he placed him on a murder case. While he was in jail he was supposed to help him instead he left him further on becoming the murder victim so he has been in their 20 years and I couldn't find a lawyer or anyone that would help him. I went to the governor the mayor everything in detail and no one would help. I finally bumped into a friend and then met up with Bertha and came to learn about CPAC it's a wonderful organization. Its helps you, its helps the people that are in need it helps the mothers that have children who are incarcerated it helps mothers that have their children killed by these crooked cops. I don't understand why cops are doing wrong they weren't like when I was young I used to be proud. Now it's like here they come and they love children little children but when it comes to teenagers I don't know what is it but they hate teenagers so I find that they have created prison’s in the boondocks somewhere and the police out there they need jobs. So they use our children and place them on crookedness, murder charges that weren't even so and such so they can have a job for tomorrow. So my son has been in jail since he was 20, 21 years old. The guards and other prisoners all ask why are you here? Because he doesn't belong there he is a child of god. We met up with this one and everything has been downhill ever since now he’s in court and been in court for 2 years it's like a game. Nothing is serious all hell is breaking loose in the world the way man is creating is the way the world is turning. So when the floods start coming this way then you know and realize that man is doing wrong it’s the opposite of what god has created in this world. That is that.
Hi my name is Carla Velasco and I'm part of the 34th ward but I also represent Cultural Alliance and the facts are clear. We already know what the problem is and isn't not the people it's the racist police so it's time for alderman and the mayor to start listening to us because the revolution is not going to wait. We are here there are people who have supported us for a long time CPAC is a solution and it needs to happen now.
Hey my name is Anderson Chavez representing myself but I am in solidarity with the Bluest Lie Coalition, solidarity with CPAC and, with solidarity with all the black and brown people that these fascist pigs have killed so far. So like Carla has said, so many people have said, before me have already said this is not something that is new not something that we need to figure out what the issue is, the issue is very clear the police officers are killing people and breaking the law. The are breaking their own laws on a daily basis and I say their own laws because they try to make it seem like these laws which are changing constantly are laws that we have to follow by force but we aren't paying attention. About the people that are enforcing these laws whether or not they are following them they are not following their own laws they are killing us on a daily basis alright look up homan square if yall havent even looked into that in your own city there is a building in homan square neighborhood that is completely illegal they are taking teenagers in and torturing them and doing all types of stuff to them. Someone has already died in there and it has been happening for a really long time and yall are sitting here pretending like we have to figure out what the issue is. John Berge? Yall dont know about John Berge? John Berge is the police chief in the CPD that was torturing people for over 20 years we found out that everybody knows about it but he's not in jail right now he's not in prison right now but the people he forced to confess to murders that they never did are still in prison right now. Why is this dude on vacation? Yall wanted an oversight you want us to keep looking at the police. We are looking at the police you're the only ones that are not looking. We are looking at the police. Real talk, so if you look at the police and start paying attention to what’s going on and what I just mentioned to you the few cases and laws that police officers are breaking. Stuff that happens on the daily basis you are not looking at it because you’re not in our community. Alright so that's what we need we need accountability we do not need to look at the police. When these videos come out we don't even look at them we don't even watch these videos no more. We don't need to watch them. I look out my window and see what the police are doing. We don't need no oversight we need accountability and we're not going to get accountability by looking at the police. I could look at those police up there right now. I have no power to hold them accountable if they shoot somebody right now. And unless there is a video something might not even happen to them and the person and if they survive they'll get charged with resisting arrest. He's probably gonna get charged with aggravated battery or resisting arrest because that's how they get away with what they're doing. So we need CPAC and yall need to start paying more attention to what's going on in your city.
Good evening my name is Camesha Jones and I am apart of the bluest lie collaborative I know a few of you all have heard of us if not just a few minutes ago. We are a group of over 30 organizations who are opposed to the introduction of Ordinance 4878 which would provide hate crime protection to police officers. We have sent every alderman and everyone on this stage a letter beginning today asking them where they stand on this issue and I’m going to read that letter right now
We, the undersigned organizations, urge you to support our call to rescind Ordinance #4878 sponsored by Ald. Edward Burke (14th) in the Public Safety Committee of Chicago City Council, also known as the “Blue Lives Matter” bill. As proposed, Ordinance #4878 would expand the Hate Crimes statute to cover current and former law enforcement officers and first responder personnel. This ordinance is a direct violation of our First Amendment right, a completely unnecessary addition — given already existing laws — and a damaging precedent for the original intent of the Hate Crimes statute.
The “Blue Lives Matter” ordinance wrongfully suggests that every community member vulnerable to an accidental scuffle with the police at a crowded protest is the same as a sniper on a rooftop. If “Blue Lives Matter” is passed, the justified “animosity or hostility” often involved in exercising one’s First Amendment right to protest police violence will be labeled a hate crime — punishable by 6 months imprisonment or a $2,500 fine. We believe this ordinance cannot deliver increased protection or safety to anyone, but is likely to result in derailing First Amendment protections, suppressing political dissent and hindering pathways to police accountability in Chicago.
We know that law enforcement officials are some of the most protected public servants in the country. Police officers, community policing volunteers, firemen, private security officers, and even emergency management workers and emergency medical technicians are already protected under provisions 720 Illinois Compiled Statutes § 5/12-2. These laws classify any remotely physical interaction with an officer automatically as aggravated assault which at minimum is deemed a Class A misdemeanor. Penalties associated with this crime, specified at length in 730 Illinois Compiled Statutes 5/5-4.5-55, involve more than six months of imprisonment or a $2,500 fine. This renders any additional attempt to make officers a protected class redundant at best and a gross waste of taxpayer resources at worst.
Hate Crimes legislation is supposed to protect people like me, historically marginalized groups that could face violence because of their immutable characteristics. The “Blue Lives Matter” Ordinance seeks to trivialize the vulnerability of these communities with a dangerous precedent. Furthermore, our city is in no position to exacerbate the standing of our Hate Crimes statute. At present, Chicago Police Department’s Civil Rights Unit, which manages Municipal Hate Crimes complaints, is undergoing an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice There are over 30 organizations. I repeat 30 organizations that are opposed to the proposal of this ordinance #4878 and we demand that it is rescinded immediately and we demand that you, Alderman Reboyras, make a statement that that proposal be even admitted into the public safety committee in city council.
My name is Maxx Suchan and I am an attorney with the National Lawyers Guild. And the NLG issued a statement today that was endorsed by 7 organizations in solidarity with the Bluest Lie Collaborative against the proposed ordinance to add the police as a protected class in the hate crime law. And we oppose this ordinance and a lot of other speaker have spoken about this we are one of the 30 organizations who have endorsed the bluest lie collaborative that is pushing back against this appalling initiative. and as attorneys particularly criminal defense attorneys and other attorneys that are in court everyday we see the balance of power and we see how this plays out more everyday. We see and understand how much power the police have how much credibility, courts and judges give their testimony against the unarmed people that they are arresting or brutalizing and we believe that this ordinance would only add heightened protection to people who are already powerful and are an overly protected class of people and it's a slap in the face against those people the LGBTQ community, people of color and other communities who have been criminalized and continue to be criminalized by these various systems. I’m not going to now read from this letter, but I’m going to hand it over to be entered into evidence. And we ask that your would urge for the immediate rescinding of this proposed ordinance and we also are here in solidarity with CPAC as well.
Good Evening. My name is Matt Madison I am with the organization Center for Social Justice. We are among many of the organizations that are in solidarity with the Bluest Lie Collective/ Collaborative in opposing the introduction of 4878 also known as the Blue Lives Matter Ordinance. I am a registered nurse. I work as a public health nurse in west side communities and I work with mostly black and brown clients who are living with mental illness and I can’t tell you how many times come across the situation where I have help my people navigate around emergencies and violence. You know, serious situations and it becomes really difficult when I’m working with people who have directly experienced police violence and you know there is somebody who would start telling them to do something very harmful. I'm supposed to tell them to call 911 knowing full and well that there is all this trauma around the possibility that that 911 call is gonna bring somebody to the doorstep that is going to result in their loved ones dying because they've experienced this in the past or known people who have experienced this in the past. I want to kind of ask everybody here how am I supposed to do my job when the accountability in the city makes it so that I can’t trust my emergency systems that are supposed to help my patients navigate the situations in their lives. Whether it be a heart attack, or psychosis or violence. A saying that a lot of us in the Nurses for Social Justice throw around is that you cannot put a bandaid on a massive hemorrhaging wound. I feel like some of the things that are happening in these communities feel like a massive hemorrhaging wound that we are trying to fix with a little bit of accountability. A little bit of oversight I should say definitely in solidarity with the folks that are talking about CPAC here. I think and I’m sure that my fellow nurses would agree with me that an ordinance that gives real power to hold police accountable is part for what we need I also want to skip back to what I also wanted to talk about by the Bluest Lie Collaborative. If we extend the hate crimes protection to the Chicago Police with the Ordinance 4878 we give more power to the police to deflect the accountability and we need assurance. We are asking for assurance that Ordinance 4878 will not be introduced and that instead the city will refocus energy on real reforms like CPAC.
Hey how yall doing my name is Le’France Lucas with Westside Health Authority and I’m a youth Mentor. Its seems like me and my peers we got the same idea towards police and stuff like that, but it’s like it was a broken trust cause we get stopped for no reason we’ll just get stopped for walking in packs and walking with dreads stuff like that and it always seems like we don’t have a voice and like we feel like the police..the police... they can do whatever they want because they the police. Cause we see detectives hop out of cars and beat up our own and we don’t know what to say we ignorant to some of the laws and we don’t know what to tell the police to be against them. But when we do speak against them it’s like we get attacked or get hit or get put on the ground or something like that. So we really don't go against the police So we gotta just break that change and its like. Now it's coming to Chicago with the killing of teens by police and I never thought that i would see that coming to Chicago. We always say like the police always gon be the police but they not about to do that in Chicago because they know how we is, but it happened in Chicago when they took one of my fellow friends that I went to high school with and it’s like what can we do about it. And it was like nobody from the community stood up or said nothing against the police cause it was like they murdered a 16 year old. He was 16 I’m 19 so when I was 13 he was 10 so I knew him since he was a shorty and I’m still a shorty. That's how I look at it. When i sen him, I was up on Homan and I saw a bunch of police cars. it was just a random stop, we all go through random stops and I guess he wasn't as humble or as humble as me or somebody else to not go against that officer and I guess the officer got to attacking him and he tried to run for his life and he got killed. So it’s bad that stuff like that happen and we see stuff like that and we just shrug it off like we just in Chicago and we see stuff like that everyday. Well I just seen this opportunity as a way to speak out against stuff like that and try to break that change up.
Hello my name is Alize Streeter and I come from the Westside Health authority and I am one of the youth that's working there. I wanted to speak upon the Blue Lives Matter ordinance that protects the police against hate crimes and I want to understand. I don't understand that law. I don't understand why we need to give the police more protection if they already are protected. They have the guns and the badges so what can we really do. What can we really do to hurt them or cause any harm to them if they have the power against us. THey have the whole government and the entire city behind them. So do we really need the blue lives matter ordinance? Like, we don't! It’s like putting tape over our mouths and trying to silence us even more and allow the police to do even more. So I don’t agree with the Blue Lives Matter Ordinance. I believe we should pay more attention to the civilians that are being brutalized by police. Thank you.
Hi, I’m Paula Roderick and I’m an attorney. I’ve worked for the city… (Alderman interrupts briefly to call out second name)... Can you hear me? Okay. I’ve worked for the city, i’ve worked here for over 30 years i support CPAC for an elected police board. Y’all have that ordinance in front of you. It was introduced on july 20th it’s really interesting that on the police accountability hearings petitions you have here you don’t mention that we already have a proposal and that’s CPAC. When I was walking in there was some young african americans walking in with me and we were looking at the school like what a beautiful school. This is how every school should look. Well you know what? Every neighborhood should be safe. Everyone has a right to expect safety in their own neighborhoods but to keep your community safe if you’re afraid to call the police you can’t do that. That’s a failure of the police and a failure of the city of Chicago and a failure of all the aldermen who have the Control and the right to enforce CPAC. We have a right to expect every citizen black, white, brown, yellow. No matter what race what religion to be treated with respect we have that right. But if we don’t demand police accountability we won’t get that form the police department. We need true action when police fall down on the job. In regards to the city, I really do believe that. My grandfather was a police officer and I believe in law enforcement, but I also know that there are good police and they know how to do their job, but when they fall down on the job there has to be accountability cause if there is no accountability no matter what job you have you will never correct your behavior. So I say also no to the new inspector general. Why do we need another inspector general we already got an inspector general. What we need is an elected police board. You need to stop arresting protesters. Everyone has heard about the the blue lie collectives woman and she was so powerful. Blue Lives Matter? Really? There is an ordinance and it protects police already and that's enforced and it’s used every single day. We need to protect our protestors. I don’t even know how many got arrested today when they we're protesting, that’s not a crime. They are speaking out. They are exercising their first amendment rights and we’re treating them like criminals especially our black brown youth. Being treated like criminals for speaking out. For helping call attention to what the problem is. So I say no. Stop training these police to used militarized policing. We don’t need a higher police budget. We don’t need more money in the police budget. We need more more money in our communities to deal with our homelessness, with our food problem, with our job problem, with our education problems. Right right, we need mental health. So stop the Blue Lives matter ordinance. You have the right to rescind that so i'm telling you that young man who spoke. I’m here speaking for him because I’m older. I’ve got a job. You know what? As an adult I have I say we need to protect our young people because If they feel threatened, we have a responsibility to speak up. Be their voice. We let...We fell down on the job, we are asking you now to step up with CPAC. Join the alderman who have already Introduced that ordinance and sign up for CPAC. Thank You!
My name is Michael Rabbitt. I’m with the organization Showing up for Racial Justice. Also in solidarity with the Bluest Lie Collaborative. I’m here to strongly endorse the prior testimony of Nick Cuba and other members of the Blues Lie Collaborative. This bLMO must be condemned and must rescinded immediately. It only undermines police accountability it does not strengthen it. The status quo is unacceptable we must have police accountability now.
Good Evening sisters and brothers. Good Evening Aldermen. Excuse my back (his back is facing the aldermen). You know uhh, let me just remind you about what this whole process is about and how it got started. It got started with the blue senseless murder of a child named laquan McDonald. Had it not been for the death of that child, they would not be having no hearing here. The city wouldn't be in an uproar like it is. Rahm Emanuel would still be acting like a mountain instead of a little cockroach running around in the shackles. So we are here because of that. And what that revealed to us more than anything in the last 50 years in this town is that there is a serious abuse of power. They mayor abused his power by suppressing evidence in a murder case for 400 days. The council abused their power by signing off for a $4million hush money to the victim. That's why we are here. Now what happens when you abuse power and you are in power based on the trust of the people. What happens is the people have a right to recall you. The people have a right to change things and we are saving we have an inalienable democratic right to demand CPAC. We are not asking you for CPAC we are demanding CPAC. Because thats our democratic right. Who do you think you are? Who do you guys think you are? Dictators? Naw. we gon show you who you are. Yall just some men and women just like the rest of us and yall can be taken down. And we gon take you down. Cause we gonna have CPAC. you can ignore us on this little piece of paper which is what you have done. You can act like you don’t hear what we are saying. You can bring out your “experts” who have never stood in a protest with us.Who have never done anything to fight for justice in this town but they know all about justice. They “experts” they never lost a child, nobody in their family has ever been murdered. They never been beat by the police or falsely imprisoned but they “experts.” Naw, we are the experts because all that has happened to us. And you better listen up because it’s the experts that’s coming to get justice. We the experts. Us. that’s coming to get justice. Better listen up. After this, there is going to be one more hearing about the expert that’s coming up on Wednesday. Then after that on September the 21st, the Mayor is going to bring his package. Im closing it up. Mayor is going to bring his package and he is going to say we have had this process, now let’s pass my package. Okay. And we are gonna say HELL NAW. Not yo package. CPAC. So the next time we meet, the next time we meet big time, it’s gon be down at city hall and we ain’t gon be a few people like this, nah, we gon close it down.
Someone from the crowd: Why aren’t you guys advertising the meeting? Can you tell them to advertise the next meeting? We didn’t know about the next meeting!
Hi uh, grateful for this opportunity, I would like to compliment North Grand high school on their air conditioning system, it works. I’m not aligned with any organization or any movement. I don’t know all the terminology, I’m new to this and a bit naive. I don't have a whole lot of answers. I’m just a citizen who watches the news and knows my neighborhood and I’ve realized that something must change. There must be major change. Where there are systemic injustices there must be systemic solutions. This will take courage by the city council and willingness to end the status quo. If the office of public safety and inspector general is created, this office must have teeth. The Public Safety Inspector General must have the ability to fully investigate accusations, complaints, and pursue prosecution of officers who commit wrongdoing misconduct and criminal actions. This IG must be a totally separate office. But i’m learning that there are other options that sound a little bit more better. There is huge mistrust of institutions and of government in our society. There must be total transparency and strong accountability to regain trust. Officials that refuse to be accountable to the citizens must not be allowed to serve. Elected officials that are unwilling to create that transparency and accountability should not be re-elected. I expected this room to be full tonight. I’m not involved in any movement and I thought, I need to be there. I expected this room to be full tonight. If our elected leaders will not commit to true change then we must not re-elect them. Thank you.
Good Evening, I’m a member of JCore which is the organizing body under the Jewish Council of Urban Affairs. I just want to thank the aldermen and Alderwoman for being here tonight. I really hope that you’re hearing and really taking into account what everyone is saying here tonight and not just going through the motions because there are a lot of people who have worked on this issue for a long time in this room and really struggled about it so I hope that you are really hearing that. I’m gonna make this really short. The people’s voice on this issue is clear, it’s CPAC. People want CPAC so you can put some other replacement for IPRA something for 5 years 10 years and then we are gonna be right back here figuring out what’s next and it’s CPAC. People are not going to stop fighting for CPAC until we have it. So um, that’s really it. CPAC is the answer that people are going to keep fighting for. Please do the right thing. Thank you.
Hi uh, Good evening my name is Christena Tendeilla and I’m here representing Asian American advancing Justice Chicago and I’m also here standing with the Bluest Lie Collaborative. I should make that distinction. I just want to say that Asian American advancing Justice also demands that ordinance #4878 also known as the Blue Lives Matter ordinance is rescinded. I’m also here in support of CPAC as well and also here to remind our city officials of what the gentleman spoke of earlier: Homan Square. Also to support the folks who are currently occupying that space where there is state sanctioned torture of people in this city by CPD. Mostly Black and brown young people right, People who are experiencing homelessness. And so, working at an asian american organization we know that this issue disproportionately affects black communities. However, as an immigrant organization and also as communities of color we are not immune to police violence that has been happening in this city as well. This bill is being framed as a way to promote safety, but we know that this is just going to extend the already abusive power of the CPD. For us at Advancing Justice we joined this fight of police accountability when someone from our community was physically and verbally abused 2 years ago her name was Jianqing “Jessica” Klyzek There was video/audio of the 12 police officers were involved in this racially charged abuse. We for the past year and a half we engaged with IPRA, with the mayor's office, and we engaged with the superintendent at the time. There was no accountability there was a few days of suspension right so for us we know that currently there is no path for accountability for law enforcement who commit a hate crime. So this ordinance that is being proposed would deepen the pre-existing protections of their accountability as public servants. So for us we are disgusted with this ordinance which is being used to further criminalize and intimidate so I'm going to end with saying that police do not make us safer gonna say that again...police do not make us safer for a city that is spending 40% on police we have to look at root cause and we need you city officials to look at those root causes. Speaking about mental health, education, youth program so on and so forth. So for the folks on the stage here. If you want to respect and protect the interest of our community that you are elected to serve. We ask that you rescind and condemn Ordinance 4878 support CPAC. Thank you
Hello my name is Aisha Truss-Miller, I am a chicago native. I’m from both the north and south side of Chicago. Right now I am representing the 7th ward. Labrarm homes, my home. I am standing in solidarity with Blue lives matter, CPAC, BYP100 and brown people for black power. The phrase Blue lives matter, in itself like the gentleman said is a slap in the face for people of color in our city. Especially for those of us like me who have experienced, witnessed, and fought or fight against the historical and contemporary acts of racists and fatal violence and oppression imposed by crooked ass cops. Sustained by the silence of brothers and sisters in their blue gang and upholded by racist policies like this one introduced by crooked ass politicians who don't give a care about black lives at all. The proposed ordinance, Blue Lives Matter, is our city’s official response to Black organizers and allies mass non-violent demonstrations and righteous anger against police brutality. How racist is that? There ain’t no response from you and folks like you in power when our children and our people are murdered, injured, and traumatized by CPD. Not a whisper. There are no laws in place to protect us, but the laws that’s in place to protect civil servants, are they not already sufficed? I know what ain't sufficed. The harassment I experience because I live in low-income hoods. I’m afraid to walk down the street with my keys and cell phone in hand because they might think “she got a gun, she black”. The 8.5 year stole from my husband due to crooked ass cops and crooked ass public attorneys, that's not sufficed . What ain't sufficed is the assassination of Fred Hampton and other sisters and brother fighting to Change and empower the people. Past and present. Persecutions of activists like Malcolm London and Ja’mel Green. Alright. What ain't sufficed was the death of Rekia Boyd, Laquan McDonald, Quintonio, and many more. That's not sufficed. Where is.. Yes Ma’am! Where is our protection and justice. Where that ordinance at? I’ve witnessed shootings, police altercations, there has been incidents where the violence was driven into my home. I don’t call the cops. They just gon come and escalate the situation. I come out and I talk to the people myself, I don't trust you. So, my tax paying dollars pay for my oppression. I will defend myself by any and every means necessary against whoever. Even a bully in a blue uniform with a gun.
Alderman, thank you very much for this opportunity to speak. I am here to night to speak on behalf of the Service Employees International Union Local 73 and healthcare Illinois in Indiana. I also want to just begin by saying expressing my personal solidarity in support for the Bluest lie Collaborative. In april of 2015, my local, i'm a member of local 73, we adopted a resolution in support of an elected Civilian Police Accountability Council. It was adopted unanimously by our 100 person executive board. It was adopted unanimously but a membership meeting here in Chicago with almost 200 members present. At that time, there had been, since january of 2009, there had been over 90 people killed by the Chicago Police department over 250 people shot in the same period of time 95% are black and latino. AND what we recognized is that everyday as trade unionist we fight for our members, and yet many of our members go home at night and in their communities their lives are in danger from the very police officers that we pay who are supposed to be providing protection, supposed to be providing safety. So after deliberation on this our union came to the conclusion that the only serious remedy for the problem of police violence and crime is for the people to have the power and the authority as is laid out in the CPAC legislation. To choose the superintendent of the police. To rewrite the rulebook, for example, on when the use of force or to discharge their weapon is allowed, and to discipline officers who violate the rights of the people. And I want to tell you that this last saturday we had a meeting with about 100 of our members with our new leadership, you may have read about our local now having an administrator from Washington DC. a very famous administrator [???] he was the right hand of Cesar Chavez back in the 1970s and 80s and now he is with our union and we discussed this and over the next 30 days seiu is going to be contacting every member of the city council to make it clear that our 29,000 members in local 73 and the 91,000 members in HCII and [???] swears local 1 will be in on this is weeks as well. We are gonna bring this message to all of yall. That we along with the teachers union and their 30’000 members and thousands and thousands of other unions and members in this city. This is what we stand for. We want an elected Civilian Accountability Council. Thank you.
Hi my name is LeCreshia Birts um, can you hear me now? Is this better? Step back? This is better? So first of all I want to say thank you to whoever brought these meetings about and I also want to thank the alderman who have been coming out to these meetings because I understand that not all of the aldermen have been coming to these meetings so I do thank you all who have been participating. I also thank you John Arena for taking up my proposal for a summary about these hearings, thank you for that. I also want to thank all the people in the alliance and people, members, of the bluest lie collective and the organization who have come out today to speak against the blue lives matter bill. And shout out to the young person who lost his friend, I also lost my uncle to police violence a couple years ago so I speak from experience like many of the other people here. This is not a game for us, we are a=tired of losing our loved ones. We are tired of the police torturing and harassing us and we have been vocal on this issue. We been vocal with Rekia Boyd, with Ronnieman, with Pierre, Bettie Jones, and others. But you haven’t. Like I said I do thank you for this meeting, but we need more than a meeting. We need tangible action steps. The first step after this meeting. I would like for the alderman to go check your emails. We sent out, the bluest lies collective, sent out an email asking for a clear response on where you stand on the Blue Lives Matter Ordinance. We want to know are you in support and solidarity with the people or are you supporting Alderman Ed Burke and his cronies who want to further enable police to torture and harass people. Secondly, We need you to support CPAC, well not up here today, but some aldermen expressed some issues with the ordinance. Come meet with us again come bring suggestions to the table. It is clear that this is what the people are demanding. We are not going to take any other ordinance okay? We want CPAC. So it’s y'all time to work with us. It’s y'all time to come from behind those tables and really take action on this issue because the people, we, have already been vocal and we really need to see what you guys are gonna do next because as the people have been saying we are not playing this next coming election. The people who have been taking those steps we will give praise where praise is due, but for those of you who haven't? Raborez? You know? We need you to step up. We need you to receind this ordinance. Okay? Thank you.
Hi, so my name is Erin Deluchri. I want to thank the Aldermen for having this hearing and I want to thank everybody that came out to it. I guess I just want to say, so, I've been reading through this sheet and the policies that you intend to have in the city council and to me it is a sense of deja vu. IPRA was created because there was a problem with police violence and police crime and it was not effective. It is not effective and it never did its job and now you have realized this and you're going to create the public safety inspector general. TO me, it’s like repetition. It seems like in a sense it’s..., with all due respect, and I think you're doing this out of a genuine sense that you want to like fix things but I dont think its going to, i think you're just rearranging deck chairs on the titanic. Why not instead of having the oversight things that don’t really have any power, why not go for CPAC. Give the people the power. The ability to actually make the police accountable. I mean almost everyone who spoke today has asked for CPAC, why not give it a chance? It could actually fix the problem. Thank you.
I’m going to make this short and sweet. I’m representing Veterans for Peace, One of the many organizations, peace organizations, social justice organizations, church organizations, of many many organizations that have endorsed and supported CPAC. There is a reason because it is democratic, and we arent gonna have the mayor. We don't want oversight from above because then you're tinkering into the political structure and everybody is...a lot of it is defending police. A Lot of these structure that have been set up have police in them. CPAC does not want the police policing the police. That's something that we do not want, but the main point that I wanted to make was that we have such broad and deep support that there are so many organizations supporting that we are gonna keep fighting for it until we get it and we know it’s in city council and we are just not going to give up. We are going to fight until we get it. Thank you.
Good Evening, my name is Mark Kaplin. I’m with Northside Action for Justice. We are one of the organizations in solidarity with the Blue Lies Collaborative and we also 100% endorse CPAC. Let me just say this. This is the second hearing I’ve been to and I have not heard one person stand up and support this proposal. You’re elected officials. I don't need to give you a civics lesson actually the way the council is structured you have the power, not the mayor. We found that out when Harold Washington was the Mayor. Ed Burke along with his cronie partner Edward Vrdolyak held the people of the city hostage for three years. Until we were able to get majority to council I know you all know this. Right? So you have the power really we are the ones that have the power of the people but you have the power. We have a situation now I m a local school counselor at Uplift community high school. Were facing a 30 million shortfall in our education budget despite the pronouncements of Forrest Claypool appointed by an appointed school board and we know where that gets us. Over the last several years we have paid out us the people of the city including you. About half a billion dollars on these police settlement suits. If we had that money then we would not have the shortfall, one. Two, if we had an elected Civilian Police accountability council these police that are perpetrating these hate crimes in our community would no longer be on the force and then we wouldn't have to worry about paying out half a billion dollars in settlements. I cannot understand why there would be any support for this proposal on the part of any alderman if these hearings have any meaning or and if the voice of people have any meaning at all. Then one you'll make sure that the blue lives ordinance never sees the light of day and is rescinded. You'll make sure that on September 21st one the schools are fully funded because you support the TIF ordinance to take that money out of these bogus TIF’s and put it into the schools. Two, youll support CPAC so the people of this city can get about their business of building communities where our young people can live theirs lives in safety and can develop into their full potential and our seniors can go into golden years with the kind of safety and protection and support of communities they need. Thank you!
Hi my name Gregory Lucero I just moved to the great city of Chicago last Friday and I'm happy to be here and glad to be able to attend this meeting. I mean no disrespect to the underpaid overworked facilities staff here at the high schools and the teachers but I find this incredibly disappointing. Literally, people's voices could not be heard and I understand that none of you do what I do for a living. Like audio, the fact of the matter is somebody should have made sure that the mics work. And I'm not saying it’s you who was responsible for setting up these events and it's ridiculous that the very fact just by happenstance. I move Friday what would this meeting look like if we literally could not hear anything. I think there's a lot of static going on in this room and it ain't just the audio. And the other thing is, I know about CPAC and I didn't learn about CPAC from the wonderful people handing out flyers at the front of the school. I come from Utah where I helped build Utah Against Police Brutality. We don't call it CPAc we call it community control of the police but this is an idea that is spreading and Chicago is the beating heart of it. So I would encourage all of you to look at your constituencies look at what people want look at what people are saying to you and realize it is not simply the eyes of Chicago that are on you it is the eyes of the country and the eyes of the world. And you gotta keep that in mind. And I just loved hearing people talk. And I've already waxed a little too verbose but let me say this you said at the start and I appreciate the sentiment. That when the timer goes off you wouldn't cut anybodies mic just remember it’s us the people cut your mic not you who cuts our. So I’m gonna go back to work!
My name is Garrett Hatcher I’m here on behalf of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression and I’m also in solidarity with all of our colleagues, Bluest Lie Collective, everybody else that came out here, with CPAC and everything else. Woot Woot just want to say that we’ve seen a lot of eye roll from a lot of people in your position when it comes to the advocacy or possibility of CPAC and we have heard that it’s not best practices about a thousand times, but I think we all know what that looks like to us is that when is democracy not a best practice in America? Well it’s only when the system is so rotten that you can’t possibly conceive in handing it to eh people who can do the best job at solving it. So, we are demanding democratic control because radical democracy always will require a serious fight against racism in this country and it will be a difficult process but we aren't going to let up until it comes into effect. We know that this new inspector general all the other propositions are purely designed so that no one gets held accountable because without a democratic popular control there is no impetus for any sort of inspector to actually put these people away. There is no one of them that would ever want that in government except the people below them. So, once again demanding support of CPAC and we are going to keep fighting no matter how many hearings you all have or other phony new review boards or oversights you come up with. We will be back out here when it happens again. Thank you.
My name is Edward Ward and I’m here representing myself as well as my community and I think that it does no justice to first of all say that the blues matter ordinance is one of the dumbest things created. I think that what you have. A police force that comes into our communities constantly brutalizes our people constantly terrorizes our children, constantly kills our brothers and sisters and siblings and then expects for an ordinance to come and say that their lives matter when the black lives matter is brought forward you have all types of excuses to say why black lives don't matter that is a problem. What must happen is this. I think that the community must really understand this, and I think a large majority of this community understands, that when you have elected officials in office these are not people who we have to listen to or people we have to adhere to, these are people that listen and adhere to us. Your power comes from us. What you do must represent what we want and if you're not doing the job we call you to do then we are asking you to be out of office. Plain and simple. You must go. We are sitting here and a bunch of us are sitting here saying we support CPAC and if there is still not anything in place that says CPAC is going to be instituted, guess what? Whatever trash you have other than CPAC must go because what we will continue to do is demand other things and regardless of what you say, you say you want other things, we say we want CPAC and if we don't get CPAC you can take your trash and put it back in the trash bag. We get the elected officials and take their asses back to where they come from and continue to fight for our communities and continue to say you know what this is our city, we are the people and we will continue to stand and rise up regardless of what you have to say. You don't create the laws. We do. And if we don't get the laws that we want in place, you gotta go. Plain and simple. You gotta go. And you're supported by a Mayor who kills our people and covers it up by a police force that lies and says they are afraid of the communities they are set and called to serve. Now if you're in these communities that you are called to serve and you are afraid chances are you need to get your scary asses out of these communities and let somebody who is not afraid of the people and who don't see the people as a threat and as pure human beings. That way we can be able to move forward. That's why we need the community to control the police and not crooked ass elected officials.
Good evening, I wanted to let you all know that I don't have anything to say that you all haven't already heard many times over tonight and across this past month. My first recommendation is to withdraw the BLM ordinance, ordinance 4878. I understand that none of you all were sponsors on the O but you know just as well as well do that your colleagues who are on this very joint committee of budget and government operations and the public safety committee are. And yet it is to my knowledge because i've been to all theses hearings all this past month with the exception of Cochran, none of them have had the decency to show their face at these hearings to look their constituents in the eye and explain to them why it is they think that it makes sense for them to spend city council time and energy into passing a hate crimes expansion ordinance. I have not seen any of them here. So you need to go back, you need to talk to them, you need to talk to Ed Burke, you need to talk to Cochran to make this happen. Seriously. Number 2, I understand that there are questions about the CPAc ordinance as it stands now and the language. The way that you can take initiative and take leadership is to working through and finding a solution and to sponsor the CPAC ordinance. With 8 of your colleagues who have already done so. I understand you have questions about police districts and this and that and that is something that we can use as an electoral district and the compliance that. The majority of you all in city council are lawyers or have passed the bar during your career. You know you can make this happen. It is a matter of stepping up and having the political will and the courage to do so. And my last point is around this question of Public Safety IG that sounds real cute but in material terms we know that a lot of you'll just earlier this year voted against the IG having power to audit your own offices as city council. It’s silly at this point it's confusing why you're throwing this idea that an IG office has anything to do with keeping people safe. Your constituents safe. Period. This is the reality and these are the stakes of the moment. As many people have already said before we already told you what we want. It's a question...and we are not going to stop regardless of what happens next month and the city hall meeting or what happens in October or in the next alderman election cycle we are doing what we need to do. We are just reminding you to do what you have sworn to do. That's all.