Hi! We are the Coalition for Re-envisioning our Safety (CROS) - a multiracial group composed of faith leaders, social workers, therapists, public health and healthcare workers, researchers, community builders, racial justice organizers, community members, and activists. Our aim is to implement our plan [link] for care-based response to to public safety concerns in Washtenaw County.
We formed in response to a resolution passed by the Ann Arbor City Council in April 2021 directing the City Administrator to develop a care-based public safety response program by December 2021. After conducting extensive research from similar programs across the country, including consultations from many experts and those with lived experience, we wrote our own plan. The text of our plan can be found here
We know we have a lot of work ahead of us, and we are ready for it - but we also are in need of some funds for this work to happen! We would be using the money for administrative costs like our website, educational and promotional materials like flyers, printing. As we host forums and events, we need money to pay for speakers, as well as consultation, research, and eventually labor fees as we build out the program.
We as a community are ready and have a wealth of resources to create and support a program such as this; as one indicator, amongst multiple city council calls for an unarmed response, there have been no calls against it. In Washtenaw County, there are already independent urgent response teams for the immigrant community, trained mediators and restorative justice practitioners, women in the local prison who are de-escalators, criminal legal system reformist and transformative grassroots and non-profit groups who are committed to these efforts, and more.
We agree that the time is now. The next step is planning for implementation of the CROS plan with start-up funds and a Request For Proposal (RFP) process. We are ready for the city to commit to its constituents and provide the resources for an independent, community-led, non-police unarmed response program - and hope that you will donate to help us get there.