Black Lives Matter Oshkosh issues set of demands

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Plans include attending the June 9 Oshkosh Common Council meeting

Following two weeks of well-attended, peaceful rallies in downtown Oshkosh, the organizers of Black Lives Matter Oshkosh are moving forward with a set of demands for changes to policy and accountability.

The Oshkosh rallies join thousands of similar events across the globe that have taken place following the video-recorded killing of George Floyd by officers with the Minneapolis Police Department. Four officers involved with the killing have been fired from the department and face criminal charges.

According to Black Lives Matter Oshkosh member Madalyn Claudia Thom, this first set of five demands encompass the minimum actions that need to be taken to begin repairing trust. “Until these changes are implemented by our governor, state legislators, district attorneys, and judges, we will not rest or be satisfied.”

Initial Demands of Black Lives Matter Oshkosh

  1. Establish an independent inspector body that investigates misconduct or criminal allegations and controls evidence like body camera video. This body will be at the state level, have the ability to investigate and arrest other law enforcement officers (LEOs), and investigate law enforcement agencies.
  2. Create a requirement for states to establish board certification with minimum education and training requirements to provide licensing for police. In order to be a LEO, you must possess that license. The inspector body in #1 can revoke the license.
  3. Refocus police resources on training & de-escalation instead of purchasing military equipment and require LEOs to be from the community they police.
  4. Adopt the “absolute necessity” doctrine for lethal force as implemented in other states.
  5. Codify into law the requirement for police to have positive control over the evidence chain of custody. If the chain of custody is lost for evidence, the investigative body in #1 can hold the LEO/LE liable.

“We will no longer stand by and watch our brothers and sisters be oppressed by those who are meant to protect us,” Thom said.

Organizers are hosting a rally today beginning at 3:00 P.M. at the Sundial in Opera House Square where the demands will be announced. The rally will then move west to Oshkosh City Hall at 6:00 P.M. for the Oshkosh Common Council meeting.

Oshkosh Mayor Lori Palmeri has been aggressively pushing for the formal creation of a city Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee, with the Common Council expected to be discussed and potentially voted on at the June 9, 2020 meeting.

Banner photo of June 3, 2020 Black Lives Matter Oshkosh rally by Matt Wallace, courtesy of Black Lives Matter Oshkosh

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Justin R. Mitchell

Justin is the founding editor of the Oshkosh Independent.

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