We’ve already had more homicides in 2019 than we did in all of 2018. We can’t make public safety a political hot potato or an opportunity for partisan grandstanding: we instead have to work together with our partners in every part of the criminal justice system - CMPD, the District Attorney, the public defenders, the judges, the magistrates, the Sheriff, and others - to make sure we’re keeping Charlotte safe. I’ll work across the criminal justice system to find solutions, because victims and survivors can’t wait.
I want you to know that I am strongly against the suggestion that we should divert critical police training funds to increasing council member salaries. Having the best trained police is important so they know how to build trust and engage with our diverse communities. Our city won’t succeed unless our neighbors are having positive interactions with the criminal justice system, and unless we’re doing the hard equity work to undo decades of structural racism.
Finally, I’m not going to throw our police and our firefighters under the bus when it’s politically convenient. They have the hardest jobs in Charlotte and they put their lives on the line every day. As a city council, we have to support our city employees and make sure that we’re an employer of choice that creates an attractive work environment. As a CEO, I make sure that my employees have fantastic benefits - I think our police and firefighters deserve the same.