MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minneapolis City Council on Friday authorized contracting with outside law enforcement to help answer 911 calls. The 7-6 vote will allocate $500,000 for additional officers.

Minneapolis Police Department says the opportunities to work with other law enforcement agencies will help ensure the safety of residents, visitors, and businesses.

Some in the community are calling the vote a step forward; they’ve been crying for help to stop crime in Minneapolis.

“I think it’s opening up a door for all of us to unite,” Lisa Clemons, with A Mother’s Love, said.

Clemons wants reform, and says she sees the immediate need for more boots on the ground.

“Crime is at an all-time high. It’s scary. People are not staying in their homes just because of COVID, they’re staying in their homes out of fear,” Clemons said.

Jay Ettinger believes the crime trend warrants collaboration.

“Anyone that will help to pitch in I think that’s great. We need to have consequences have some meaning right now because we’re in crisis. People that are in need the more are being hurt the most,” Ettinger said.

Metro Transit Police responded to the request for assistance, telling WCCO: “The Metro Transit Police Department does do not have capacity to provide additional resources to the Minneapolis Police Department, but we will continue to work collaboratively with MPD on multiple fronts ensuring the safety of our transit system and riders

Hennepin County Sheriff David Hutchinson says his department will help.

“It’s important to note that as elected Sheriff I’m not letting politics play a role in this. I’m letting public safety play a role. People need to be safe in Minneapolis,” Hutchinson said.

He says details still need to be sorted out like schedules and number of deputies.

“We’ll pay people overtime, we’ll have to reevaluate different positions with people. It’s going to be a burden but it’s a burden we have to take,” Hutchinson said.

The police union told WCCO it has a number of questions for MPD and elected officials surrounding staffing, pay and the shortage of officers.

More on WCCO.com

 

Jennifer Mayerle

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