Dear Mayor Saffo and Wilmington City Council Members,
My name is [YOUR NAME], and I am a resident of [YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD].
I am demanding that you defund the Wilmington Police Department and reallocate funds to invest in social services that would directly improve the well-being of Wilmington residents.
The adopted 2019 police budget was $32,302,549, and the recommended budget for 2020 is $36,546,488. This is a 13% increase from 2019 to 2020 and an almost 20% increase from 2018 to 2020. That money could be better spent on supporting affordable housing, educational opportunities, health care, and community outreach programs that are more successful at promoting safe and stable communities than law enforcement has been. I demand that more aggressive financial support be directed to those areas.
I am demanding long-term, sustainable change. I am demanding that the city of Wilmington’s budget be better spent on quality of life for all, particularly for those in our Black and Brown communities, who are more than likely to be directly affected by police brutality and violence. I also urge the Wilmington City Council to enact legislation that holds police accountable and to overturn policies that allow police to engage in unlawful behavior with impunity.
People are marching in the streets because they know that these actions will result in a healthier, more just society. I implore you to listen to the needs of Wilmington residents and take immediate action to address their concerns. Can I count on you to consider an alternative budget that puts a focus on social service programs?
[YOUR NAME][YOUR ADDRESS]
[YOUR EMAIL][YOUR PHONE NUMBER]