CHICAGO – State Rep. La Shawn K. Ford, D-Chicago, has these comments after a Missouri grand jury’s decided not to indict Officer Darren Wilson in the death of Michael Brown: “The Ferguson case has negatively impacted the trust between law enforcement and African American communities across the country. We cannot ignore repeated calls for help from the police and the community to provide the resources needed to develop better relations between law enforcement and the communities they are pledged to serve and protect. The Ferguson situation teaches us that we must both invest in building police forces with police that are sensitive to the communities they serve and officers that police with care and restraint.”
Last night President Obama commented: “In too many parts of this country a deep distrust exists between law enforcement and communities of color,” he said. “We need to recognize that this is not just an issue for Ferguson. This is an issue for America.”
Ford continued: “This verdict is a wake-up call that America must invest in the best technology to protect both law enforcement and civilians, in order to protect the life and liberty of everyone. We should say that just like we respond to other nations’ tragedies with resources, now is the time to do more than talk. In order to move forward and to one day have better policing in every community, we must invest in better training, the latest equipment, and more African Americans on police forces. With limited local and state budgets across the country, the federal government must provide support to improve and promote community policing.”
For more information, contact one of Ford’s constituent service offices: 816 S. Oak Park Avenue in Oak Park at 708-445-3673, 4800 W. Chicago Avenue in Chicago at 773-378-5902 or in the Stratton Office Building in Springfield at 217-782-5962.