When Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man, died in the custody of Baltimore police officers on April 19, 2015, the incident brought to a head years of anger that residents felt toward the Baltimore Police Department. The protests that followed—often referred to as the Baltimore uprising—focused a national spotlight on the city. But for local residents, Gray’s death was only the latest grievance against a police department that had long been perceived as overly aggressive, out of touch with the community, and able to act with impunity.
The Center for American Progress has teamed up with the Campaign for Justice, Safety, and Jobs—a coalition of Baltimore-based grassroots advocacy organizations—to release a set of six recommendations to reform the Baltimore Police Department. Directed at the leadership of Baltimore—the mayor, city council, and police commissioner—the recommendations aim to make the city’s police department more accountable, more transparent, and ultimately more effective at preventing and solving serious crimes. As broad principles, they can also be adapted and repurposed for other cities dealing with police-community tensions.
Please join the Center for American Progress and the Campaign for Justice, Safety, and Jobs for a panel discussion on how policymakers can begin to build trust between the police in Baltimore and the communities they have sworn to serve.
Carmel Martin, Executive Vice President for Policy, Center for American Progress
Spencer Overton, President, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies
Todd A. Cox, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress
Ronald E. Hampton, Advisory Board Member, National Police Accountability Project; Past Executive Director, National Black Police Association
Ashley Overbey, Baltimore Resident
Kwame Rose, Social Activist; Artist; Founder, Black EXCELLence Foundation for Black Youth
Ben Jealous, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress