RELEASE: CAP’s Ed Chung Welcomes Jackson, Mississippi, Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba to Mayors for Smart on Crime Initiative

Washington, D.C. — Today, the Center for American Progress is pleased to announce that Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba of Jackson, Mississippi, has joined CAP’s Mayors for Smart on Crime initiative. Lumumba joins mayors from 15 cities across the country who are committed to smarter approaches to public safety and criminal justice that are both fairer and more effective than outdated tough-on-crime tactics.

Upon joining Mayors for Smart on Crime, Mayor Lumumba released the following statement:

As a nation, we must deal with the reality that we’re not truly serious about reforming our criminal justice system until we get serious about confronting the obvious contradictions within our judicial process. We first have to acknowledge that we have a nation which profits off of the criminal justice system, and we have to acknowledge that we must look for holistic solutions to crime, understanding that you can never out-police crime. If you’re serious about eradicating crime, you must eradicate the conditions that lead to crime, conditions of poverty, and lack of access to opportunity. In Jackson, we are attempting to build a dignity economy that focuses on the inherent dignity of every citizen—those who have never been impacted by crime, returning citizens, and those who have been victimized by crime.

Ed Chung, vice president for Criminal Justice Reform at the Center for American Progress, released the following statement:

The Center for American Progress is pleased to welcome Mayor Lumumba and the city of Jackson, Mississippi, to our Mayors for Smart on Crime initiative. We are thrilled to support Mayor Lumumba’s bold leadership toward building a safer community rooted in racial and economic justice for all of Jackson’s residents. In the past year, a diverse cohort of leaders from cities of all shapes and sizes has come together through Mayors for Smart on Crime to advocate for smarter approaches to public safety. We are honored to continue working with city leaders such as Mayor Lumumba, who are at the forefront of the criminal justice reform movement.

In addition to Mayor Lumumba, other city leaders who are part of this initiative include Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome of Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Mayor Randall Woodfin of Birmingham, Alabama; Mayor Marty Walsh of Boston; Mayor Nan Whaley of Dayton, Ohio; Mayor Michael Hancock of Denver; Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson of Gary, Indiana; Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles; Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York; Mayor Jim Kenney of Philadelphia; Mayor William Peduto of Pittsburgh; Mayor Levar M. Stoney of Richmond, Virginia; Mayor Melvin Carter of Saint Paul, Minnesota; Mayor Jenny Durkan of Seattle; Mayor Michael Tubbs of Stockton, California; and Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington, D.C.  To learn more about Mayors for Smart on Crime, visit www.smartoncrime.us.

For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, please contact Julia Cusick at jcusick@americanprogress.org or 202-495-3682.