According to a recent study, the training of Chicago police officers is insufficient, which makes it difficult to alter the “problematic culture” of the CPD.
Why it matters: While other large cities, including Los Angeles, have seen some crime rates decline after instituting police reforms, violent crime is on the rise in Chicago.
Additionally, Chicago has invested millions of dollars on police training, including a new $128 million training center for the CPD that opened this year on the West Side. The cost of the facility was criticized by some.
Bringing you the news The new report, written by the city’s working group on use of force led by community members, shows critical shortcomings in the way Chicago police officers are trained on new use-of-force policy.
The city and police department updated their use-of-force guidelines in 2020, and officers were required to participate in a full day of training on the changes.
The working group was established the same year to oversee CPD as part of the consent agreement.
Sure, but: The department disregarded the majority of the working group’s suggestions for improving its current policy.
Close up: In its most recent report, the working group makes the case that CPD’s current training thwarts policy reforms by:
teaching police that their lives are more valuable than the lives of neighborhood residents.
fostering a “we against them” mentality that trains police to perceive residents of the neighbourhood as possible threats.
demonstrating to cops how to excuse and even hide police abuseOf note: The working group also reported that some officers would fall asleep during the training and that many were being trained after having worked the night before.
What they’re saying: “The training supports the very same culture that has gotten the department in trouble in the first place,” University of Chicago law professor and study co-author Craig Futterman tells Axios.
“It’s the same culture that has protected the department’s pattern and practices that have led to civil rights violations.”
Between the lines: Public safety and policing have taken center stage in the mayor’s race.
The police union has suggested that reforms aren’t working, which many Chicagoans echo when pointing out their public safety concerns.
Mayoral candidate Paul Vallas has said he wants to “reverse the rules that have handcuffed police.”
The intrigue: Vallas also supports the department’s recent move to recruit retired officers back to the force to fill vacancies. But Futterman is concerned about the move.
“If you want to change the culture, you don’t bring back folks who nurtured the old culture or left because they weren’t down with the program.”