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AADM President on Upcoming Commission Meeting and Public Safety Oversight Committee

Mokah Johnson

The Athens-Clarke Mayor and Commission are expected to consider a civilian public safety oversight committee and a human rights commission at their meeting this evening. The Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement supports both measures. Mokah-Jasmine Johnson is President of the organization.

“Hopefully these things will lead to more equity and justice within our communities.”

There has been some confusion regarding what power the civilian oversight committee would do.

“Civilian oversight is very important because it gives us an opportunity to address policing, such as the tear gassing incident that happened that a lot of residents still did not get answers to or felt satisfied with the answers that were given,” according to Johnson.

Johnson says it would not have power over policing agencies.

“It doesn’t give you the power to be over the Police Chief and tell him how to do his job. It gives you the ability to make recommendations and to also be a part of certain processes to see that this is either fair or unfair.”

She emphasizes the body would not have authority over any of the agencies it would be tasked with overseeing.

“You can write up your recommendations, give the report to the Mayor and Commission and it’s up to them to decide what to do, based on the outcomes.”

It doesn’t mean that this entity can hire and fire police officers or do anything regarding funding.”

Critics say the committee is not necessary.

The Mayor and Commission meeting gets underway at 6 pm Tuesday.

Johnson says there are more than 200 such entities across the nation.

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