"I believe that everyone deserves to feel and be safe in their communities, and to be treated with equal dignity and respect. My motto is Kaviar CARES. Together, we can create collaborative, accountable, responsible, and equitable safety."

Collaboration: Community safety must be a community-based solution. Proactive engagement, listening, and partnering must be a matter of process. When everyone is invited to have a seat at the table, we can find solutions that work best for everyone.

To expand community engagement beyond CAPs, I would:

  • Ensure the police department is a proactive and listening partner in all community issues, whether directly or indirectly related to safety.

  • Connect residents with a regular, directed feedback loop on local police investigations and conduct, and be a key contact to ensure specific concerns or questions about investigations are fully addressed in an accountable and timely fashion, in every instance.

  • Conduct regular proactive outreach to different constituencies and affiliated community organizations to hear concerns and opinions about police reform and public safety, and build partnerships with local organizations for continuous, specific feedback.

  • Create an anonymous reporting portal for crime and police conduct outside of the police system that may be more trusted for filing complaints or issues.

Accountability: We entrust police with our greatest challenges, most dangerous moments, and in too many cases, our lives. It is then essential that we do everything we can to shine a light on this system to ensure it is working as intended. Evidence-based decisions keep everyone safer.

As the 19th police district representative, I would:

  • Review and report on local police district progress and timeliness on the Consent Decree, Community Policing Advisory Panel, and Mental Health Steering Committee reforms.

  • Provide regular, clear, and transparent data reporting on district budget use, timeliness of crime responses and investigations, and case closure rates.

  • Improve victim advocate and support services, including developing a public-facing system to track investigations on behalf of victims, helping residents navigate department procedures, and advocating for speedy responses and solutions.

  • Ensure 19th District officers are trained in best de-escalating practices when connecting with homeless residents and that every officer can connect to emergency housing and support services.

Responsibility: While we can not police our way out of violence and must make long-term investments in multilayered causes of crime, we need alternatives to immediate community safety. There are emergencies that do not require a response with a gun. We must be intentional about who needs to be responding to crises, how we institute justice, and what victims need for restitution.

As the District Council member, I would:

  • Support the robust implementation of mental health emergency response alternatives, including the 988 mental health emergency hotline, the expansion of social worker alternatives to police, and community mental health first aid.

  • Collaborate with police to identify those most at risk to be a victim or a perpetrator of violence, and work with community organizations to deliver intensive wrap-around social support, mentoring, and job training.

  • Develop opportunities for residents to be active participants in community safety and police reform, including policy forums, police academy programs, and personal safety seminars.

  • Create a mutual-aid task force to build strong partnerships with community-based resources as a first resort for non-police emergencies.

  • Create victim-centered restorative justice opportunities that emphasize offender accountability, intervention, and repairing the harm done.

  • Advocate for substantive improvements and destigmatization of police officer mental health initiatives so they are at their best on the job, including time off, more supervisory support, better field training, and comprehensive officer mental wellness programs.

Equity: Police must treat every person with equal dignity and respect, and take steps to better understand diverse resident perspectives. Everyone deserves equal access to justice. Chicago spends more per capita on police-related civil rights legal judgments than other large cities. A concerted effort must be made to address the actions.

As the 19th Police District representative, I would:

  • Expand community-specific, culturally appropriate training for police officers by curating community-led training and restorative conversations with different local constituencies and organizations to build understanding and empathy.

  • Support and locally mirror the Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability data collection efforts from the Police Department or the City’s Law Department as part of the citywide effort to curtail police misconduct and implement risk management practices.

  • Analyze and report on local use of force incidents, vehicle stops, and pedestrian stops alongside demographic and crime data, to identify policing practices and patterns.

  • Address the key issue of implicit bias that can lead to over-estimating aggression among BIPOC individuals by encouraging every Town Hall police officer of every rank to take the Implicit Association Test to highlight that implicit bias is within everyone and to reduce any shame associated with awareness training. It is critical that officers are regularly and consistently trained to outthink their instincts, de-escalate situations effectively, as well as provide viable nonlethal alternatives and require they be utilized.

  • Develop opportunities for community mental health first aid, bystander intervention, and anti-racist training.

Safety: Everyone deserves to feel and be safe in the communities where they live, work, and play. Without safety, nothing else can grow - kids can't walk peacefully to school, young women need to be on high alert, and car owners are insecure it will be there in the morning to take them to work. Over the past three years in the 19th police district, robberies are up 50% and motor vehicle thefts are up a staggering 118%. Over the past year, every single crime category has increased. While the numbers are low compared to parts of the south and west sides of Chicago, residents are feeling it. Indeed, community safety will take broader investments in economic opportunity, removing social determinants of poverty, and addressing root causes of crime.

In the purview of the District Council, I would:

  • Expand catalytic converter marking and registration programs as a deterrent for this rapidly increasing crime.

  • Create opportunities for post-incarceration employment, which is proven to reduce recidivism, and partner with local businesses to offer such transformative opportunities.

  • Support local mental and behavioral health diversion programs to provide appropriate, and timely community-based treatment instead of costly jail time.

  • Expand partnership with UChiLab to map officer patrols and crime reports to better understand geographic enforcement and support strategic officer deployments.

  • Leverage police department resources to host job training programming, identify residents most at risk for needing social services, and proactively offer connections to a social worker or direct assistance.