Cook County, Illinois, State’s Attorney Kim Foxx said after rexamining the role law enforcement unions play in the city’s neighborhoods, she has renewed her commitment not to accept donations from the Fraternal Order of Police, the union that represents Chicago police officers.
“I’ve added my name to the “Say No to Police Money” petition alongside progressive leaders from across the country, and I want you to know why, Foxx said.
“As an elected official, I understand the weight of the responsibility that the police and representatives hold. But we must also understand that there has been a historic lack of oversight for elected officials to investigate police wrongdoing. This is not the way we move forward. We need to ensure independence and accountability. In good conscience, I cannot accept any funds from the FOP,” she added.
Foxx, who called this a “major decision” made her announcement several weeks after the Martin Luther King County Labor Council in Seattle voted to expel the Seattle Police Officers Guild, which represents about 1,300 cops because the guild leaders failed to deal with racism in their ranks.
“We can’t both stand with a police system that’s set up to hurt our Black community and stand up for our people of color who are oppressed by the police,” said Jane Hopkins, executive vice president of SEIU Healthcare.
The labor council represents more than 100,000 workers in King County, Washington. It provides advocacy for labor causes and endorses political candidates.
Color of Change, an online civil rights organization, has launched a campaign urging elected officials to cut their ties with the Fraternal Order of Police.
Since George Floyd’s death, labor leaders have been under pressure to sever ties with law enforcement groups and take a stand against police brutality.
Color Of Change, an online civil rights organization, is in talks with several AFL-CIO affiliated groups to press for the removal of police unions.
Scott Roberts, COC’s Senior Director of Criminal Justice Campaigns, is quoted, “There’s a debate going on and we’re trying to support the folks within labor that understand that police unions are not trying to protect the humanity and dignity of all people.”