Dear Kissimmee City Commissioners,
My name is [YOUR NAME] and I live in [AREA/NEIGHBORHOOD]. I am writing to you today to demand the immediate reallocation of funds away from the Kissimmee Police Department and into desperately needed community resources and programs. Specifically, I am advocating for safe and affordable housing, a living wage, more accessible and extensive public transport, services and shelter for the homeless and vulnerable populations, investment in community-based food banks, co-ops and gardens, free and noncoercive health care infrastructure, economic assistance, COVID-19 relief, youth programs that promote safety and well-being, and equal job and educational opportunities for all.
In the adopted 2020 budget, the Kissimmee Police Department is slated to receive $25,698,675, significantly more than any other department in the General Fund and more than several other departments combined. In contrast to this generous funding of our city's policing, social and quality-of-life services throughout Kissimmee remain critically underfunded. Precious resources such as the Osceola County Council on Aging, HOPE Community Center, Park Place Behavioral Healthcare, Boys and Girls Club of Osceola County, and more are left to share a mere $350,000.
Are the needs of the people not worth more?
I invite you to imagine what $25 million could do if it were poured into the people of this city instead of a system designed to keep our most vulnerable enslaved. Imagine what our schools, our libraries, our hospitals, our community centers, our parks, our buses, our roads could look like. Imagine what our people could do if they were adequately cared for. We do not need more police. Now, more than ever, it is evident cops do not make our cities any safer. In fact, their very existence actively drains from the resources that do.
Commissioners, your action is imperative. The members of this community refuse to continue to support a budget that does not meet the needs of its people. Can I count on you to reallocate and reinvest these funds? If not, you can count on me to help vote you out.
[YOUR NAME][YOUR ADDRESS]
[YOUR EMAIL][YOUR PHONE NUMBER]