(MADISON) – Today, the Joint Committee on Finance will vote on a budget motion to provide funding for five staff at the Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation to investigate officer-involved shootings throughout the state. State Senator Lena Taylor (D-Milwaukee), the Senate lead author of the law requiring independent investigations and the ranking Senate Democrat on the committee released the following statement in advance of today’s vote:

“As officer-involved deaths continue to gain national attention, I’m glad the budget committee will take this matter up today. When the unthinkable happens, the families and communities impacted by an officer-involved death deserve at the bare minimum an independent investigation. Fulfilling not one but two Attorneys General requests to fund these positions is simply the right thing to do.

“However, we cannot stop at today’s vote. We must continue to educate, discuss and take action to rid our society of injustice. That is why this week, more than 100 members of alumni chapters of all nine historically African-American fraternities and sororities held a day at the Capitol where they discussed social justice issues. Meanwhile, I encourage my colleagues put our money where our mouths are by funding these positions. Additionally, lawmakers must dig deeper and invest in our people by funding programs that target literacy, agriculture, justice reform, the environment and health care.”