Effective criminal justice reform and police accountability are on the line in Annapolis. Today. See floor debate here. It’s time to show our legislators that we are serious when we say that if they do not act on behalf of the people they are elected to represent then we will replace them. Despite last week's in-person protest in Annapolis, legislators are breaking faith and we must now ensure there are consequences for those who stand on the side of the Fraternal Order of Police in the next Democratic primary in 2022. See all the ways below.
Last Thursday, the Maryland Coalition for Justice and Police Accountability, including Progressive Maryland and 90+ other organizations mobilized hundreds of Marylanders to protest a horrendous dilution of racial justice legislation.
As we rallied we heard stories from mothers and other family members of those who had lost their lives at the hands of law enforcement and each of these courageous voices remarked on the many years they and other movement leaders have been fighting for substantive changes. Unfortunately their at times tearful pleas for change were ignored once again by Maryland Democrats. For details on why this really, really matters read Leaders of A Beautiful Struggle's recent piece, 2021 MD Police Reform, why is community oversight of police so important?
The very next day following the protest, Democrats in the House Judiciary Committee voted down amendments to include meaningful civilian oversight to the Speaker’s so-called police reform bill. In doing this, these Democrats chose the side of the Fraternal Order of Police over their constituents and the many Marylanders who have had to suffer as a result of reckless police repression and violence.
It’s time for us to show them that we will no longer wait for the end to police abuse and murder. It’s time to show them that we are serious when we say that if they do not act on behalf of the people they are elected to represent then we will replace them. Unfortunately, our protests thus far have not been enough to do this and we must now ensure there are consequences for those who stand on the side of the FOP in the next Democratic primary in 2022. We will do this by recruiting an electoral army of over 1000 volunteers and donors who will pledge to knock on doors, make phone calls, and send text messages in support of the opponents of lawmakers who choose their FOP benefactors over grieving mothers who have lost children to police violence.
If Maryland Democrats do not use their supermajorities in the House and Senate to finally hold police accountable for their actions then we will need to show them we will hold Maryland Democrats accountable for their inaction.
Or if you’re not available on Monday, sign up here to get involved with the campaign.
Progressive Maryland's Justice Task Force Team