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Gov. Walz, DFL state leaders announce police reform, accountability legislative package

“The world saw the worst of Minnesota three weeks ago and this group up here is going to make sure the world sees the best of Minnesota,” Walz said.

MINNEAPOLIS — Gov. Tim Walz and other DFL state leaders announced a package to address police reform and accountability Thursday afternoon.

"These reforms have been implemented in other places and the data shows that they work," Walz said. “The world saw the worst of Minnesota three weeks ago and this group up here is going to make sure the world sees the best of Minnesota.”

The following is an outline of the package summary:

  1. Use of force: Reform the statute that defines when use of deadly force is justified.
  2. Alternatives to policing: The creation of a new office within the Department of Public Safety to administer grants to community-based violence-intervenors and problem solvers. And funding a co-responder form of policing that pairs officers with social worker when responding to crisis calls and welfare checks.
  3. Police oversight reform: Creating a frame of accountability by creating the Police-Community Relations Council, reforming arbitration of termination and real-time data collection and complaint analysis.
  4. Voting restoration: Ensure voting rights of those who are disenfranchised.
  5. Community healing: Fund community healers who are trained to respond to oppression-induced trauma whether present day or historic.
  6. Independent prosecution and investigation reform: Provide the Attorney General with independent jurisdiction for prosecution of police-involved deaths and create a department within the Bureau of Criminal Investigation for independent investigation of police-involved cases.
  7. Training expansion: Expand deescalation and mental health crisis intervention training.
  8. Warrior Training and Choke Holds Prohibited: Prohibit warrior-style training and all restraints or holds that restricts the person's airways or blood flow.

House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt issued the following statement:

"Democrats added felon voting to the agenda for Saturday's eight hour hearing, but have so far ignored Rep. Pat Garofalo's bill that would help Police Departments get rid of bad cops. If Democrats are serious about working on real reforms, they need to put every option on the table — even ones that might make their union campaign contributors uncomfortable.

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