BLOG / August 10, 2021

Last Week This Morning: Phoenix PD under investigation

By TJ Hernandez

 

Ducey’s mask ban. As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, a group of over 150 doctors is urging Gov. Doug Ducey to require masks in public schools. Ducey has recently doubled down in defense of a new state law that prohibits locally elected school boards from enforcing mask mandates or vaccination requirements. Numerous school districts across the state of Arizona are flouting this law, choosing to follow recommendations from public health experts by requiring that masks be worn indoors again, particularly in areas with substantial transmission.  

Phoenix PD under investigation. The U.S. Department of Justice has opened a “far-reaching”investigation into the Phoenix Police Department’s use of excessive force, abuse and discrimination, and retaliation against protestors. The Phoenix PD is one of the deadliest police forces in the nation. Last year, after the murders of multiple black and brown men by police sparked large-scale demonstrations against police brutality, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office filed false gang charges against peaceful protestors that were later dropped. Activists are skeptical of the DOJ investigation, highlighting the DOJ’s failure to include the MCAO as part of the investigation, in addition to outcomes of similar costly investigations in other states that have led to more police funding and reform based solutions, rather than addressing the root problem and redirecting funds for community investment.

2021 redistricting. Deveyn from Progress Arizona breaks down the different ways that politicians attempt to tell us what our communities look like, and how we can fight back against gerrymandering. 

Rural Arizona Summit. Join Indivisible and Civic Engagement Beyond Voting for this important online summit that will highlight the work being done to transform Arizona’s rural governments and elections. There will be speakers from all over the state to discuss candidate recruitment and support, voter registration and election protection, persuasion and messaging to rural voters, and building rural coalitions. 

Keep up with the DOJ investigation. Text POWER to 63566 to stay up to date on the DOJ’s investigation into the Phoenix Police Department. We must ensure that this costly investigation leads to true systemic change rather than reform-based recommendations that increase police funding. 

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