MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The north metro city of Brooklyn Park has hired an outside group to analyze its policing practices, in part to examine the police’s possible role related to inequalities in the city.
Mayor Jeffrey Lunde announced Friday that Brooklyn Park, a suburb north of Minneapolis, will work with Wilder Research, a St. Paul-based research group that examines the effectiveness of programs and services.
“Brooklyn Park is one of the most culturally rich areas in the Midwest with more than 50% BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) and 1 in 5 of their residents born in other countries,” the mayor said, in a statement. “We have always worked to have understanding between officers and our diverse community members. Hiring Wilder Research is a proactive approach to see if there is anything else we can do to continue building trust between our officers and community members.”
According to a release from the city, Wilder will be tasked with identifying areas where police are doing well and where they could improve, particularly in the area of racial equity. Wilder’s analysis will also examine systemic inequalities in the city and root causes of violence. The group will then report to the city council with recommendations for addressing violence and improving policing.
The hiring of Wilder Research marks one of the final steps of the city’s push for police reforms in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
Floyd, a Black man, died after being arrested on May 25 in south Minneapolis. Bystander video of Floyd’s arrest showed former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for several minutes, even as Floyd said repeatedly that he couldn’t breathe.
Chauvin is facing murder and manslaughter charges in connection to Floyds’ death. Three other former officers involved in the fatal arrest face charges of aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter. All four of the ex-officers are slated to stand trial next year.
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