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Sunday, April 11, 2021

City officials unsure when NYU public safety partnership will conclude

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Mayor Joe Hogsett announced a partnership with the Criminal Justice Lab at New York University’s School of Law in June 2020 to chart a new path for public safety, but city officials still aren’t sure when it will conclude.

The partnership is supposed to lead to policy recommendations following community polls and surveys and a review of Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.

Anne Milgram, founding director of the Criminal Justice Lab, helped disband the police department in Camden, New Jersey, in 2012 and said during the announcement last summer she feels there is “a real possibility of systemic change” in Indianapolis.

The city organized public safety conversations — which have been virtual because of the pandemic — since August.

Milgram presented data from a survey and poll during the first conversation, including that two of the top issues for Indianapolis residents are homicides and gun violence.

The city’s partnership with the Criminal Justice Lab came amid protests in Indianapolis as people called for everything from more transparency in public safety to defunding the police.

Some African American leaders were initially upset when Hogsett announced the partnership because they felt excluded from the process.

“We have the capacity to lead, and for whatever reason, he’s not interested in seeking out community response before he makes an announcement on how he’s going to spend money or how he’s going to study us,” Indy10 Black Lives Matter organizer Jessica Louise said at the time.

Contact staff writer Tyler Fenwick at 317-762-7853. Follow him on Twitter @Ty_Fenwick.

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