Please respond to the City’s Transforming Community Safety Survey

The City Council’s “Transforming Community Safety” survey is now available.  This is the survey the council is using to collect residents’ views on the future of public safety in Minneapolis. The survey must be completed by November 20th for your views to be included in the first phase of survey results (which establishes the initial themes that shape later community engagement phases). We strongly encourage all residents to complete this survey, but to consider the following comments from the DMNA Public Safety Task Force before you do:

  • Most of the downtown community’s discussion about public safety, including at the recent DMNA Town Hall Public Safety Forum, has focused on policing and on the community’s concerns about safety in our neighborhood. Please note that this survey is not directly about either of these things, but rather about the council’s pledge to create a new public safety model, as clearly stated on the first page of the survey form.
  • One of the DMNA Public Safety Task Force’s guiding principles is a commitment to a continuum of safety strategies that go beyond law enforcement. But our principles also assert an undeniable role for law enforcement in our public safety system. The City’s survey gives ample opportunity to express your thoughts about what non-police programs and services might look like, but no opportunity to comment on how these programs and services should work in conjunction with law enforcement.
  • If you choose to add comments about the role of law enforcement in public safety, there are a few ways to do so.  The primary way is through the first two questions, which ask about your hopes and concerns for community safety in the future.
  • The next question asks about specific programs, strategies, or suggestions for improving community safety. When you check the provided responses, you will get to a new page with an open-ended question for each checked category.  This creates additional opportunities for you to comment on the role of policing and safety concerns.
  • The next question is: The following are categories of calls that the Minneapolis Police Department responds to. Please select any that you believe should be responded to by someone other than the Minneapolis Police Department, if any. Note that this question does not let you indicate whether you think MPD officers should also respond to the listed categories, several of which are serious crimes.  The only way you could express this is 1) to check the categories where you think someone else should be involved, and then 2) state very clearly in the following question that your suggestion is for responders in addition to a law enforcement officer.

Whatever your specific views, we encourage all members of the downtown community to complete the survey by November 20th.  You can take the survey in English right now, and translations are available on the City website. Scroll to the bottom of the Web page to see them.

 

 

DMNA letter to residents regarding the City’s 2021 Budget

November 10, 2020

Dear Neighbors:

On October 27th, the DMNA hosted its virtual annual meeting and public safety forum and the number of residents participating was record-setting – we had over 350 participants. Neighbors engaged with Mayor Frey, Councilmember (CM) Fletcher, and several representatives from the Minneapolis Police Dept. (MPD) on the current crisis in public safety, asking what can be done to reverse the increase in violent crime plaguing Minneapolis. That very high attendance validates that public safety is a priority issue for residents and compels neighborhood organizations such as ours to urgently engage in the discussion to support policies that will again make all Minneapolis neighborhoods safe.

Earlier this year, the DMNA endorsed Guiding Principles for Police Reform and Public Safety. They include five main elements:

  1. Accountability and oversight of police and public safety;
  2. MPD reform and re-invention;
  3. Safety strategies;
  4. A clear role for MPD in public safety; and
  5. Build a broad consensus on the path to a safer city for everyone.

Today what stands before the city council is Mayor Frey’s proposed budget for 2021 which includes funding for three additional MPD recruit classes. We have all been alarmed by the sharply reduced staffing levels that MPD has weathered while at the same time crime is dramatically increasing in our neighborhoods.

The DMNA’s goal for the annual meeting forum was to facilitate resident interaction with decision-makers and to help each of you decide where you stand on the policy decisions. The DMNA’s official position regarding the Mayor’s proposed 2021 budget is to fully support the police component outlined by the mayor. Your decision is, of course, your own. But as a neighborhood association, we encourage residents to write or call their council members with feedback.  You can find your ward and city council member’s contact information through this link: https://www.minneapolismn.gov/government/city-council/find-my-ward/

The time is now. Budget deliberations have already begun and will end in December. The DMNA encourages residents to also participate in the public comment sessions to be held on November 16th and December 2nd discussing the city budget.  If you want to speak, you will need to sign up for one of the available speaking slots on November 16th or December 2nd.  Use the following link to sign up; scroll down to select which meeting you prefer:  http://www2.minneapolismn.gov/meetings/onlinemeetings/attend-citycouncil-meeting

We are in a time that many would characterize as a crisis in public safety and our elected officials need to hear from their constituents loudly and clearly. The current state of the city is unacceptable on multiple fronts. Providing a safe environment for residents is the most basic responsibility of the city council and improving our police force is equally important. We need to ask ourselves which policies will enhance public safety in our city and reverse the ever-increasing crime rate.

The DMNA believes the answer must be to support Mayor Frey’s proposed police budget at a minimum, while we work together for positive change. We hope our fellow residents will share their views as well in support of the proposed police budget from Mayor Frey.

Thank you,

The DMNA Board of Directors

Pam McCrea, Chair

Kevin Frazell, Vice Chair

Carletta Sweet, Secretary

Dianne Walsh Treasurer

Max Erickson

Andy Gittleman

Laurie Rice

Tomek Rajtar

Joe Tamburino

Cc:          DMNA Public Safety Task Force

DMNA Public Safety Task Force Update 11-4-20: Town Hall Meeting Wrap Up

At the DMNA Public Safety Town Hall Forum on October 27th, moderator Merv Moorhead presented a variety of questions to our elected officials and a panel of law enforcement officials.  These questions were drawn from a larger pool of questions written by Public Safety Task Force members and by community members, who were able to submit questions as part of their annual meeting registration.  People attending the forum were also invited to submit questions in the chat feature of the Zoom meeting.  As a means of describing our community’s specific concerns about public safety, we have prepared a list of 1) thirteen questions asked by the moderator; 2) fifty-three other questions received in advance of the forum, and 3) twenty-five chat questions submitted during the forum. This is the complete list of all questions we received; we believe it represents an unambiguous statement of our community’s concerns, dissatisfactions, and policy choices.  Please review the list closely, and then continue our forum conversation by:

A recording of the Town Hall portion of the DMNA Annual Meeting is available here.

DMNA Public Safety Town Hall Panelists Names and Contact Info

Thank you to our elected officials and law enforcement officials who participated in the DMNA Annual Meeting.  We are grateful for their time.  Below are their names and contact information. If we were unable to get to your question during the town hall, you may reach out to them directly.  Please reference the DMNA Annual Meeting – Public Safety Town Hall in the subject line.

If you were unable to attend the DMNA Annual Meeting on October 27, but have an interest in watching the Public Safety Town Hall portion of the meeting, it is now available on the DMNA’s YouTube Channel.

DMNA Public Safety Town Hall from 10/27/20 on YouTube

Meet the DMNA 2020 Board Candidates

Elections to the Downtown Minneapolis Neighborhood Association will take place at the 2020 Virtual Meeting on Tueday, October 27.  We have five candidates for four seats.  Three seats have three-year terms, and one seat has a one-year term.  The top three voter getters will take the three-year terms. The fourth will take a one-year term (which is filling out the remainder of a term vacated by a board member who moved out of the neighborhood). Click on the candidate’s name or “read more” to see their complete application.

You must register to attend the Annual Meeting to vote in the election.  Please register via the link below.  You will receive a follow-up email that explains how to login to Zoom the night of the meeting.

DMNA Annual Meeting Registration via Eventbrite

Meet the Candidates

Katie DonohueWhy do you want to join the DMNA Board?
The main reason is I want to get active in my community. I moved downtime a little over 2 years ago and feel I now have time and energy to give to this. Read more about Katie.

 

 

 

Kevin Frazell (Incumbent)Why do you want to join the DMNA Board?
My wife and I have thoroughly enjoyed our life downtown and are still glad to be living here, despite the current challenges. I love city government and I love grassroots democracy, including neighborhood associations. The DMNA has been a great way to be civically
engaged in Minneapolis.  Read more about Kevin.

 

 

Andy GittlemanWhy do you want to join the DMNA Board?
My primary reason for wanting to serve on the DMNA Board of Directors is to address safety, security, and livability issues in both the DT East and West neighborhoods. Read more about Andy.

 

 

 

Pam McCrea (Incumbent)Why do you want to join the DMNA Board?
I would like to continue serving on the DMNA for many reasons. I am fully committed to serving the community and strengthening the DMNA role through the newly established Public Safety Task Force, the HOA Advisory Group, and the Civic Engagement Committee. Read more about Pam.

 

 

Joe Tamburino (Incumbent)Why do you want to join the DMNA Board?
I truly enjoy working to better our downtown community, and trying to ensure a safe and vibrant neighborhood. Read more about Joe.

Please register for the DMNA Virtual 2020 Annual Meeting on October 27

The Downtown Minneapolis Neighborhood Association Annual Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, October 27, at 6 p.m. This year’s meeting will take place in a virtual format via Zoom. The agenda includes updates from elected officials Mayor Jacob Frey and Council Member Steve Fletcher.  We will also hear reports from our Land Use Committee, Civic Engagement Committee, and Public Safety Task Force.

In addition, as part of this year’s Annual Meeting, we will be hosting a Public Safety Town Hall.  We have secured a great panel of speakers including the following:

  • Inspector Bill Peterson (CONFIRMED)
  • MPRB Chief Ohotto (CONFIRMED)
  • Metro Transit Captain Brooke Blakey (CONFIRMED)
  • Shane Zahn, DID SafeZone Collaborative (CONFIRMED)

We will ask the panel important questions about crime and safety in the downtown community. If you have a specific crime and safety question that you would like addressed, please submit it with your event registration.  Registration is available through the link below:

DMNA Annual Meeting Registration via Eventbrite

Final online open house on draft built form regulations (downtown focus) rescheduled for Tues, Oct. 13

Final online open house on draft built form regulations (downtown focus) rescheduled for Tues, Oct. 13; previous open house meetings now available online

The last of three online open houses to review and comment on the draft built form regulations has been rescheduled for: 

Date: October, 13

Time: 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Meeting link and call-in number will be sent out the morning of the event.

Open house meeting recordings available online

Recordings of the previous meetings, along with more information and additional opportunities to provide comment, are available at https://minneapolis2040.com/implementation/built-form-rezoning-study/.

Guiding Principles for Police Reform & Public Safety

The Public Safety Task Force seeks to advance these five principles, adopted by the DMNA Board on 7-6-20:

  • A Clear Accountability for Oversight of Police & Public Safety;
  • MPD Reform & Reinvention;
  • A Continuum of Safety Strategies;
  • An Undeniable Role for Law Enforcement;
  • Working Toward a Broad Consensus on the Path to a Safer City for Everyone.

These principles do not specify exactly what a future Minneapolis public safety system should look like, but they do offer a useful, flexible framework for discussing that question.  Within this framework, for example, the idea of “dismantling MPD” is rejected entirely, as is the idea of allowing past policing practices to continue without reform.  Between these rejected ideas, however, there is a wide middle ground for meaningful discussion of our public safety needs and how they can best be addressed in our city.  The Task Force is designed to encourage and inform the downtown community’s participation in this public safety debate, through the city council’s official engagement process and through other means.

Your active participation in public engagement opportunities is essential!  The policing & public safety decisions that our elected officials make in the coming months will have far-ranging consequences for Minneapolis and our downtown neighborhoods.  The DMNA Public Safety Task Force is dedicated to providing you with as many informational tools as possible to help you influence our officials’ decisions, in ways that represent our collective best interests.

City Council Approves Community Engagement Process on the Future of Policing and Public Safety

On Friday, October 2nd, the City Council approved an outline for its community engagement process on the future of policing and public safety.

The process is divided into four parts:

▪             Phase One (October 2020 – December 2020):  A community survey and public forums focused on the current model of community safety and opportunities for changes, with a synthesis of initial themes presented to the Council in early December along with a draft vision for consideration and adoption by the Council

▪             Phase Two (January 2021 – March 2021):  Public forums where community members can review and confirm the themes and goals established in the first phase plus a deeper dive into ideas for a new public safety model to help inform draft recommendations of actions steps to realize the established vision and goals

▪             Phase Three (April 2021 – May 2021):  Opportunities to offer feedback on draft recommendations at public forums and online

▪             Phase Four (June 2021 – July 2021):  Recommendations will be refined and finalized, incorporating community feedback gathered throughout the engagement process, with a final report to the Council on strategies for building a new model for community safety

The process is guided by the principles of accessibility and meaningful and inclusive engagement. It will be open to all community members who wish to participate.

Recommendations made through this process will focus on but may not be limited to intermediate policy changes, investments, and partnerships that support a public health approach to community safety, alternatives to policing, and research and engagement to inform the potential creation of a new Department of Community Safety. There will be a review and analysis of existing models, programs, and practices that could be applied in Minneapolis.

This process will build on the work already underway to refine and improve our 911 response and shift certain calls for help to responders other than MPD. It will also identify the resources needed to support recommendations.

Share Your Input on Public Safety at the First Public Comment Session on October 8 at 1:30 pm

The Public Health & Safety Committee of the City Council has set a public comment period at the beginning of its next meeting to hear from the public about public safety.  This is the first opportunity for downtown residents to participate in the city council’s community engagement process about the future of the Minneapolis public safety system (see the following article).  Please take advantage of this opportunity to express your thoughts on policing, police responses, public health-oriented violence prevention, law enforcement reforms, and public safety needs in Minneapolis.

Public safety public comment period 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 8
To comment at the committee meeting, sign up in advance on the City website.


On Friday, October 2nd,  the City Council approved an outline for its community engagement process on the future of policing and public safety.

The process is divided into four parts:

▪             Phase One (October 2020 – December 2020):  A community survey and public forums focused on the current model of community safety and opportunities for changes, with a synthesis of initial themes presented to the Council in early December along with a draft vision for consideration and adoption by the Council

▪             Phase Two (January 2021 – March 2021):  Public forums where community members can review and confirm the themes and goals established in the first phase plus a deeper dive into ideas for a new public safety model to help inform draft recommendations of actions steps to realize the established vision and goals

▪             Phase Three (April 2021 – May 2021):  Opportunities to offer feedback on draft recommendations at public forums and online

▪             Phase Four (June 2021 – July 2021):  Recommendations will be refined and finalized, incorporating community feedback gathered throughout the engagement process, with a final report to the Council on strategies for building a new model for community safety

The process is guided by the principles of accessibility, and meaningful and inclusive engagement. It will be open to all community members who wish to participate.

Recommendations made through this process will focus on but may not be limited to intermediate policy changes, investments and partnerships that support a public health approach to community safety, alternatives to policing, and research and engagement to inform the potential creation of a new Department of Community Safety. There will be a review and analysis of existing models, programs, and practices that could be applied in Minneapolis.

This process will build on the work already underway to refine and improve our 911 response and shift certain calls for help to responders other than MPD. It will also identify resources needed to support recommendations.