Cori Bush Introduces Legislation To Support Policing Alternatives

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On Monday (June 28), Rep. Cori Bush of Missouri announced that she is introducing legislation that would support alternatives to incarceration and policing. 

“When people in crisis need help, calling 911 too often becomes a death sentence,” the congresswoman wrote in a tweet. “We demand a better way forward. It’s time to respond by transforming our approach to public safety. I’m introducing The People’s Response Act,” she added. 

The People’s Response Act would create the Division of Community Safety –– a brand new federal division within the Department of Health and Human Services. The new addition to the Department would serve as a research and funding hub for alternatives to incarceration and policing, Bush wrote.

Additionally, the legislation establishes a federal level first responders unit of unarmed professionals who respond to mental health and substance use crises. 

“Because mental health professionals should respond to mental health emergencies, not police,” Bush wrote. 

“We’re not just creating one federal health responders unit –– we’re going to fund them in cities and towns across the country so that every community can have an alternative to police to call when they need it,” she added. 

The legislation, Bush noted, is about making investments in the community that help support better public safety, including housing, healthcare, and education. 

Bush’s legislation proposal comes as crime rates soar across the country and the US sees high rates of gun violence.

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