Email and mail government officials and council members to reallocate egregious police budgets towards education, social services, and dismantling racial injustice.

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Letter to Mayor-President and City Council

Murfreesboro, TN

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To Mayor-President Shane McFarland and the Murfreesboro City Council:

My name is [INSERT NAME] and I am a resident of [YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD]. I am writing to demand that the Murfreesboro City Council adopt a budget that prioritizes community well-being and redirects funding away from the police.

Referencing the most recent city budget, a staggering $30.9 million [1] was allocated to the Murfreesboro police department. That is 18 percent of the yearly budget, whereas community based programs take up less than one percent of the same budget.

The current city budget is communicating that law enforcement is almost 30 times more important than community outreach, and I do not believe that this aligns with most residents' values. According to its Mission Statement, the City Council "strives to provide a safe, progressive, and healthy community for its citizens by employing dedicated individuals who work together to ensure the highest possible quality of life [2]." This statement cannot be true when Black people make up 24.3 percent of Tennessee’s total population, but 45 percent of Tennessee’s felony inmate population [3].

Pledging to review the city’s use-of-force policies is not enough. I am demanding that we reallocate funds from the police department to programs proven to more effectively promote a safe and equitable community and to address economic disparities. These programs include community-based mental health services, substance abuse treatment services, affordable housing programs, and more. I demand a budget that reflects the actual needs of Murfreesboro residents.

History has shown that police β€œreform” is not enough. We must take a hard look at the ways that the current system in place fails to serve--and in fact actively harms--our community, and come together to reimagine the role of police in our city. I strongly urge you to remove funding from police departments and reallocate it to social services that make a meaningful difference for the citizens of Murfreesboro.




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