Since last October, a specially-appointed committee has been meeting to develop recommendations to East Lansing’s City Council about how to create an Independent Police Oversight Commission. The commission itself – not yet formed – is expected to be charged with the role of reviewing complaints by citizens made against East Lansing Police Department personnel. The commission may also advise on policing policies and work to collect more data on policing in East Lansing.
Now, as the Study Committee on an Independent Police Oversight Commission prepares to present its report and recommendations to the City Council this June, the group wants to hear from more members of the public.
You can attend the group’s community input meeting online and by telephone on Monday, Mar. 29, starting at 6 p.m. According to a press release from the City, the goal is “to gather community feedback and perspectives on policing in East Lansing” and recommendations about police oversight.
The meeting will start off with a brief presentation about what the group has been working to accomplish. Then there will be break-out sessions (still online and by telephone) where smaller groups can discuss what they think should happen. Feedback from these smaller groups will be channeled back to the whole committee.
The plan for small group discussion in Zoom “break-out rooms” is the closest the Study Committee can get online to community meetings that have been held at Hannah Community Center, where people talk with others sitting at their table.
- To access the meeting online on Monday at 6 pm, use this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86274383355 (meeting ID: 862 7438 3355).
- To access the meeting by telephone, dial in at 6 p.m. on Monday to (312) 626-6799 or call (888) 788-0099. When prompted, plug in meeting ID 862-7438-3355 and hit # on your phone. When asked for a participant ID, just hit # again.
The group has prepared some questions to help facilitate the breakout sessions. You can see those prepared questions here.
You do not need to prepare anything in advance of this meeting. But, if you want to see what the group has been producing in terms of drafts, you can view these documents:
- Short summary of what the Study Committee has been working towards, prepared for the March 29 meeting
- Draft recommendations for the Oversight Commission
- An introduction to the concept of independent police oversight
You can also see ELi’s extensive reporting on policing in East Lansing, including on the work of the Study Committee, by clicking here. Our reporting includes what we know from data about the disproportionate policing of Black people by ELPD.
The Study Committee is Chaired by Chuck Grigsby, who is also Chair of East Lansing’s Human Rights Commission. The other members are Vice Chair Chris Root, Cedrick Heraux, Erick Williams, Helen Josephson, Kathy Boyle, Kelli Ellsworth-Etchison, Noel Garcia Jr., Quentin Tyler, Sharron Reed-Davis, and Sadé Callwood.