The PCOC held its monthly meeting on April 12, 2016. Highlights of the meeting included an update on the mental health research and study, outreach efforts to be a part of the Minneapolis Cinco de Mayo celebration, appointments to the newly formed Audit Committee, Quarterly reports from the OPCR and Internal Affairs, a discussion of body camera police listening sessions conducted by the MPD and NCR and the PCOC’s postion on the current state of the MPD body camera policy, individual check-ins with the Chair and case selection.
The meeting began with a update on the mental health study from OPCR Policy Analyst Kaela McConnon Diarra who informed the Commission that a new draft of the preliminary report, referred to the Policy and Procedure Committee last month who offered suggested edits and additions, with those revisions and additions was available for Commission review. Some of the revisions and additions made included more detail in the Best Practice section of the report on co-responder programs, more emphasis on the need for a specialized CIT officer team even with all MPD officers being trained in CIT, and additional detail as to who would be a part of a recommended working group to review possible frameworks that could be implemented by the MPD to improve officer interactions with those experiencing mental health crises. The report was again referred to the Policy and Procedure Committee for further review, especially in regards to organizing the working group. Read the updated draft report here and recommended policy here.
Next, a community leader and main organizer of Minneapolis’ Cinco de Mayo celebration addressed the Commission and expressed his desire for the PCOC’s presence at the event and detailed the work he and Commissioner Cerrillo had already been doing to get MPD involved in the event as well. He reported that 3rd Precinct Inspector Sullivan plans to attend, and that a police car will lead the parade, all with the goal of promoting communication between the MPD and the Latino community and for the MPD to understand the needs of that community. The Commission passed a motion to attend the event from 10am-7pm on May 8th at a booth provided by event organizers free of charge.
Following that, appointments were made to the Commission’s new Audit Committee. The chair of that Committee is to be Commissioner Buss and the other members will be Commission Chair Brown, and Commissioner Singleton.
OPCR Director Imani Jaafar presented the OPCR’s quarterly report to the Commission, followed by the Internal Affairs Commander Jason Case presenting the quarterly report for the Internal Affairs Department. Both were informative and well received and this is the first time IA has presented its report to the Commission. The OPCR report can be found here, and and IA report found here.
After this, the commission engaged in a lengthy discussion of the current situation in regard to body camera policy and the MPD. Commissioners attended multiple listening sessions put on by the MPD and NCR and noted the community’s dissatisfaction with the MPD’s current policy and their support for the PCOC recommended policy published last September. In response to Commissioner’s experiences at these meetings, a motion was passed for the Policy and Procedure Committee to plan a PCOC sponsored forum to inform community members about what the PCOC recommended policy says, how that differs from the current MPD draft and generally raise awareness regarding how important an effective body camera policy is. Another motion was passed for the Policy and Procedure Committee to draft a public statement from the PCOC regarding the current MPD policy draft and action on this issue.
The Chair then checked in with all individual Commissioners on what they have been working on and Commissioners shared many great things including: work with the Minneapolis Bike Association on bicycle citations, meetings with MPD precinct inspectors, outreach to Catholic churches in Minneapolis, work on Islamophobia and more.
The Commissioners then moved to postpone case discussion until the next monthly meeting but did chose cases to consider for next month as well. Those cases were 5,7 and 10. The meeting then adjourned.