Legal experts call on Mayor Lightfoot to enact the Civilian Police Accountability Council (CPAC) ordinance
Chicago, IL – In a statement delivered to Lori Lightfoot. March 13, 31 law professors from the University of Chicago and Northwestern University law schools are calling on the mayor to pass the Civilian Police Accountability Council, or CPAC, ordinance. CPAC would give communities in Chicago the democratic right to elect police accountability representatives with the power to control the Chicago Police Department (CPD), including having final say over discipline in misconduct cases and setting department policy.
Citing the crisis in the Chicago Police Department – including the shooting of an unarmed passenger in a transit station two weeks ago – the authors “urge the Mayor and members of City Council to reject the half-hearted reform efforts of the past and support CPAC.” “Doing so,” they continue, “will ensure that CPD has the most rigorous police accountability system in the nation and will be a definitive step towards ending CPD’s longstanding pattern of racism, violence, and corruption.” The letter comes just before a newly revised version of CPAC will be introduced into the city council for a fourth time on March 18.
It is time for Mayor Lightfoot to heed the legal community and the 60,000 Chicagoans who have already demanded passage of CPAC from their local aldermen. The Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, together with a broad coalition of organizations that includes, among others, the Chicago Teachers Union, SEIU Local 73, United Working Families, Democratic Socialists of America, Freedom Road Socialist Organization, Black Lives Matter-Chicago, Indivisible Chicago, Trinity United Church of Christ, and Standing Up for Racial Justice, calls on the mayor to put the people’s democratic rights before her own power and enact CPAC now.