A socialist mayoral candidate in Buffalo, New York, said that sending police officers on emergency calls just “re-victimizes” people and wants to send social workers instead.
India B. Walton pulled off a surprising and unexpected victory in the Democratic primary for the mayor’s office in June. Walton has said that she wants to cut the funding to the police force and send social workers to respond to some emergency calls instead.
On Wednesday Walton reiterated that policy when responding to an incident where a 3-year-old was shot.
“It is my concern that that community has experienced a very deeply hurtful trauma, and our response was to re-victimize them with another traumatic event, rather than sending in social workers and mental health counselors,” said Walton.
Walton says she plans to reallocate $7.5 million of police funds to social programs.
“It would go to a lot of the things that we talked about just now, into ensuring that people have access to mental health services, that communities have the resources that they need to thrive, things like wraparound services, educational assistance for our young people, job training, skills training,” said Walton.
“And also just organizing and frontline people who can go knock on someone’s door and have the door answered, to be able to offer some of the services that have been underutilized,” she added.
Walton has proudly proclaimed herself to be a socialist and has said she will work to make the government of Buffalo far more progressive than it already is. She is a supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement and has said that she looks up to Rep. Cori Bush (D-Mo.).
Here’s the video of Walton’s comments:
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