July 2, 2020
Indivisible Kirkland stands in solidarity with Black-led organizations calling for defunding the police and investing in community wellness, particularly in programs that will positively impact Black, brown, and indigenous communities. Previous efforts at changing policing have not worked, leaving us “trapped on a treadmill of reform” (Angela Davis). Defunding the police, through efforts such as those explained in #8toAbolition, will stop the treadmill and create real change.
“There is a clear need to rebalance power between the police and the communities they are supposed to protect. We shouldn’t be handing out unlimited funding to local police departments that have proven over and over again that they are going to use that money to inflict violence on Black communities. Instead, we should call on our city leaders to cut funding for police departments, and use that money to invest in meeting Black and brown community’s needs. That means taking money out of police budgets to make sure people have well-funded schools, good living-wage jobs, affordable housing, and more”— Indivisible National
BLM-Seattle/King County tells us that to divest from policing and invest in communities we should:
- create affordable housing
- bolster mental health services
- end youth incarceration
- fully fund education
- create police-free schools.
Indivisible Kirkland pledges to support the organizations, with particular emphasis on Black-led groups, who are working to defund the police and invest in marginalized communities. Our support comes in the form of financial support, policy advocacy at the local and state levels, and amplifying the work that Black and brown leaders are doing in our community.
For more information on defunding the police, please utilize these resources:
- Black Lives Matter — Seattle/King County
- Movement for Black Lives, “Defunding the Police: What It Takes to End Police Violence”
- Indivisible National’s Defund the Police explanation and resource page
- Haymarket Books’ presentation of “Abolish Policing, Not Just the Police” with Victoria Law and Maiaime Kaba
- We Came to Learn — Police-Free Schools
- Seattle Indivisible: It’s Time to Defund the Police
- Lake Washington Education Association’s Letter to the School Board regarding racial equity, which includes a request for police-free schools.