FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                            
April 23, 2021
CONTACT: Rep. Jim Steineke                                                                            
(608) 266-2418

What Folks are Saying: Racial Disparities Task Force Results in Meaningful Recommendations

MADISON – The Speaker’s Task Force on Racial Disparities Subcommittee on Law Enforcement Policies and Procedures released its report earlier this week, outlining recommendations garnered from consensus points within the group’s members, including community advocates, faith leaders, and law enforcement experts.

The set of recommendations comes after in-depth discussions among the bipartisan group over the last seven months, bringing all voices to the table to address racial disparities within the state. Co-Chairs Rep. Jim Steineke (R-Kaukauna) and Rep. Shelia Stubbs (D-Madison) led the group in finding avenues forward that had the backing of both communities of color and law enforcement. Following the release, here’s what folks are saying about the subcommittee’s recommendations:

“I really stand wholeheartedly 100% behind all of these recommendations.”

            -Rep. Shelia Stubbs (D-Madison), Task Force Co-Chair

"This package of legislation breaks new ground in new ways. The new legislation coming out of this is really important for transparency and accountability — those are areas that if we had just gone forward last year without these discussions, we would have missed."

            -Rep. Jim Steineke (R-Kaukauna), Task Force Co-Chair

“Resulting from several months of in-depth discussions, the recommendations released today represent a meaningful step forward in strengthening policing and the relationship between law enforcement and the communities it serves…We strongly support these measures and urge state lawmakers to act on them as soon as possible.”

            -Wisconsin Professional Police Association

“It’s encouraging that this diverse committee reached consensus on such an important and timely issue. Any steps the Legislature can take to improve accountability, data collection and public reporting on police use-of-force incidents will provide Wisconsinites with better information and instill confidence in the system.”

            -Badger Institute

“These certainly are not easy issues to discuss, but this subcommittee brought together community members and law enforcement to lay the groundwork for bipartisan legislation. I look forward to seeing those bills introduced for consideration by the legislature."

            -Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester)

“On behalf of the county law enforcement community, we are grateful to Rep. Steineke and Rep. Stubbs for the opportunity to listen, contribute and find consensus on numerous critical policy items impacting law enforcement and the citizens we serve to protect.”

            -Badger State Sheriffs’ Association, Grant County Sheriff

 

“Our organization is proud to support the concepts put forward by the Speaker’s Task Force on Racial Disparities in their report and look forward to working with legislators on both sides of the aisle to pass meaningful legislation that helps improve our communities.”

            -Wisconsin Chiefs of Police Association

“I’ve been watching the Task Force and have already had productive conversations with Representative Steineke about the Task Force recommendations. To the extent there are new legislative ideas, I will review them with an open mind and hope we will reach agreement.”

            -State Senator Van Wanggaard (R-Racine)

“Our profession needs to continuously evaluate what we are doing and make changes to solidify the trust the overwhelming majority of our community has in us, build trust with those who are willing to give us the opportunity to do that, and make our community a great place to live for everyone.”

            -Appleton Police Chief Todd Thomas

“Data collection, increased training, and other tools should be part of the solution, and the men and women on the Task Force were thorough and open-minded to finding resolutions. We are grateful for the time and energy put into this effort and we look forward to supporting policies that promote safety for all Wisconsin residents.”

            -Wisconsin Troopers’ Association

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