Empowering Communities for Public Safety (ECPS) Ordinance

 The Woods Fund Chicago Power of Community Award (2022)


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On July 21, 2021, the Chicago City Council passed the historic Empowering Communities for Public Safety Ordinance (ECPS)—the culmination of a six-year long organizing campaign that engaged thousands of people across the city of Chicago, creating the most democratic policing system anywhere in the country. Two coalitions, the Grassroots Alliance for Police Accountability (GAPA) and the Chicago Alliance Against Racism and Political Repression (CAARPR), joined together in early 2021 to create and advocate for the ECPS ordinance to increase community power, oversight of policing and safety in Chicago. The ECPS ordinance created the Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability designed to ensure that policies and priorities are rooted in expert knowledge about best practices and grounded in the needs and values of the community. The ordinance also creates elected, three-member “District Councils” in each of the city’s police districts, bringing together police district leadership and community members to set local priorities and work together on neighborhood safety plans. In January of 2022, Mayor Lightfoot appointed Adam Gross, a leader with deep experience in developing, advocating for and implementing structural police reforms, as the first Executive Director of Chicago’s Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability.

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