Dear [CITY OFFICIAL'S NAME],
My name is [YOUR NAME] and I am a resident of Worcester living in District [YOUR DISTRICT NUMBER]. I am writing to express my concern over the current proposed FY2021 operating budget allocating over $52 million to the Worcester Police Department (WPD). I do not support the WPD's budget increase of $254,320. Rather than invest in a system that has been founded on racist principles and has brought the unnecessary deaths of so many Black and Brown people nationwide, I urge that you reject this increase and reallocate that money towards services that will build up and support their communities instead.
[INSERT YOUR REASONS HERE; FEEL FREE TO PULL FROM THE SCRIPT BELOW. INCLUDE YOUR OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCE]
In light of recent events across our country, I believe our view towards policing needs to change completely. Police can not be used as band-aids for social problems, while services that would actually benefit our community lack sufficient funding. Please consider the following:
Black and brown people are being murdered by police with near impunity. The American Public Health Association has identified that police violence is a public health emergency and “U.S. policing has failed to equitably deliver safety, placing an inequitable burden of mental and physical harm on socially and economically marginalized populations.”
Police are called to respond to situations they were never meant to solve. Creating true public safety means we must invest robustly in education, health care access, employment programs, transportation, affordable housing, and community restorative justice initiatives.
Investments in more policing have never brought about reform. Cities like Dallas and Los Angeles are taking steps to shift their priorities. A comprehensive report on a 150-year review on the Minneapolis Police Department further proves the lack of success investing in police brings.
Community members have called into city council meetings, left messages, and written emails demanding a more inclusive process for citizen input in our budget. The City Council must take a stand for racial justice by significantly defunding policing and investing in real public safety for our community - starting with reallocating the proposed increase in WPD funding to various social services.
[YOUR NAME][YOUR ADDRESS]
[YOUR EMAIL][YOUR PHONE NUMBER]