To Mayor Bashert and Ypsilanti City Council:
My name is [YOUR NAME], and I am a resident of Ypsilanti. This past week, our nation has been gripped by protests calling for a rapid and meaningful reconsideration of the role of policing in communities as well as an end to racism and anti-Blackness in America. It has come to my attention that the budget for 2021 is being decided as these protests continue.
YPD has been a waste of our resources. Last year, the YPD budget was approximately one quarter of available discretionary funds. While we’ve been spending extraordinary amounts on policing, we have not seen improvements to safety, homelessness, mental health, or affordability in our city. Instead, we see wasteful and harmful actions of our police.
I call on you to slash the YPD budget and instead meaningfully reallocate funds towards social programs and resources that support housing, jobs, education, health care, child care, and other critical community needs. I demand a budget that supports community wellbeing, rather than empowers the police forces that tear them apart.
We can be a beacon for other cities to follow if only we have the courage to change.
[YOUR NAME][YOUR ADDRESS]
[YOUR EMAIL][YOUR PHONE NUMBER]