E Joseph Oppegaard-Peltier III 0

Racial Justice in Bemidji

E Joseph Oppegaard-Peltier III 0 Comments
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Racial injustices are real and alive here in Bemidji, Minnesota. As Beltrami citizens face our local jail being investigated for abuses, neglects and murders of our family members our city is being taken to court because of our officers' actions. During this past summer, our local law enforcement agencies gave support to white nationalist armed groups to patrol and terrorize our communities. One of these well documented and most known incidents involved the Off Grid Armory. The community demands a change!

“A Project for a Change” champions these paths for a safer Bemidji and demands these changes for the Bemidji City Council to implement.

  • Establish a Community Review and Oversight Committee. This committee will consist of three elected at large positions for a term of two years and no more than 3 consecutive terms. Elections for the terms will follow the election cycle starting in 2022.
  • Committee will have access to a legal council who will act as a 4 member of this committee with all privileges and discussions yet does not hold a vote on matters.
  • Legal council has responsibility to the board and the citizens of Bemidji to represent the best for our community and to seek prosecution of any and all crimes uncovered by the committee.
  • Review and Oversight Committee roles and responsibilities listed below yet are not limited to:
  • Receiving and investigating citizen grievances on any employee of the city of Bemidji and the Bemidji Police Department.
  • Is privy to Bemidji official documents, reports, dash camera and body camera footage, HR reports and pending investigation committee has the power to reprimand and/or terminate any public employee or Bemidji police officer.
  • Sharing success stories and regularly informing the public of committee updates.
  • Bemidji City Council will mandate that any time a Bemidji Police Officer draws their gun in the line of service, a full report is provided to the Bemidji City Council, the Oversight Committee once it is created, and the community.
  • Referral made to the citizen who had the officer’s gun drawn on, to counseling or assistance from other agencies. (Community Services).
  • Social media and community outreach education about the criminal justice system and your role as a victim or witness to a crime.

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