Congresswoman Tlaib Statement on Public Safety & Policing Bills
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib (MI-13) released the following statement regarding the public safety and policing bills the U.S. House of Representatives voted on this Thursday:
“Every community across the United States deserves to be a safe one. This is why I’m proud to have voted to invest in mental health and proven community violence interventions that keep our communities safe today. The Break the Cycle of Violence Act will equip violence intervention and prevention specialists, counselors, and other professionals with resources and tools needed to address trauma and harm at its root. The Mental Health Justice Act will create a grant program to provide resources for mental health first responders units, so that we can stop treating mental illness as a crime.
“Public safety means that every person in our community has what they need to have a good quality of life and to thrive. This means fully funded public education where students and teachers have what they need in the classroom. This means well-paying union jobs where families do not have to worry about not making enough money to cover this month’s rent. This means robust physical and mental health resources that address the harm and trauma many of our neighbors have had to endure.
“Unfortunately, instead of acting to actually make communities safer and bring true public safety, a bill that would not hold police departments accountable for abuses of power, discriminatory actions, and illegal uses of force was moved to the House floor without input from communities impacted directly or even the customary committee hearing. I could not support moving the Invest to Protect Act without adequate guardrails and oversight like policies that we passed in the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. To truly tackle the root causes of crime and have safe communities for everyone, we must go beyond the tried-and-failed tactics of over-policing and over-criminalization. Our constituents deserve for us to work together to deliver a good quality of life for all and I urge my colleagues to focus on doing just that.
“These bill cannot be the end of us fighting for true public safety. I hope that we will not stop fighting until every community feels safe.”