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Council President to Nominate Residents to Serve on Inaugural Public Safety Advisory Commission

Council President to Nominate Residents to Serve on Inaugural Public Safety Advisory Commission

After Thorough Selection and Review Process, Council President Scott Will Advance 11 Names at Monday’s City Council Meeting

 

BALTIMORE, MD (October 29, 2020) — After a thorough selection and review process, Baltimore City Council President Brandon M. Scott will introduce the first round of nominations for the inaugural Public Safety Advisory Commission during Monday’s council meeting on November 2, 2020. The 11 nominees will then be assigned to the Executive Appointments Committee. 

“This is about making sure Baltimore residents are the ones guiding long-lasting policy and cultural change in our police department,” said Council President Scott. “We are excited to get community members in a position to hold BPD accountable and ensure that reform efforts don’t stop at the consent decree.”

The Commission, established via legislation introduced in 2017 by then-Councilman Scott, will be made up of Baltimore residents who will serve a four-year term to guide community-police interaction and Baltimore Police Department practices. It will exist beyond the consent decree process.

Every November, the 23-member Public Safety Advisory Commission will develop recommendations for community interaction for the Baltimore Police Department, with a goal of creating consistently positive and respectful actions between Baltimore residents and the BPD. This report will inform Baltimore Police Department strategy and engagement. 

In January, the Council President convened a group of community leaders and police reform advocates to review 89 applications and make recommendations about who should be appointed to serve on the inaugural Commission. That team included Ray Kelly of the Consent Decree’s Community Oversight Task Force, Dana Vickers Shelley, Executive Director of the ACLU of Maryland, George Oliver Buntin, Chair of the Civilian Review Board, Merrick Moses, Victim Advocate for the State’s Attorney’s Office, Daniel Webster of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Eric Melancon, Chief of Staff at the Baltimore Police Department.

“Before the consent decree, residents and legislators collaborated to create a conduit for a community-informed process into our government. This is a community-powered effort and a big step forward for our city,” said Ray Kelly, Director of the Citizens Policing Project. “It’s critically important that everyday, directly-impacted community members are part of this process.”

The appointees announced Monday will fill the following positions:

  • One Baltimore City resident, who serve at large; 
  • Seven Baltimore City residents, one from the central, northeastern, northern, northwestern, southern, southwestern, and western police districts;
  • One resident of public housing;
  • One re-entry professional;
  • One member of the LGBTQ community;

Appointees will be joined by the Chair of the City Council Public Safety Committee, the Baltimore Police Commissioner, and the Director of the Baltimore City Office of Equity and Civil Rights, all ex-officio members. In their place, the ex-officio members may select a designee. 

The group will also include one Baltimore City Senator (recommended by the Maryland Senate President), one Baltimore City Delegate (recommended by the Speaker of the House), one representative of the Fraternal Order of Police, and one representative of the Vanguard Justice Society.

Council President Scott committed to appointing the Public Safety Advisory Commission to guide long-term BPD reform efforts as part of his 26-point Legislative and Policy Agenda. Members of the public can follow the progress on this and other initiatives using the Council President’s Legislative and Policy Tracker.

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