What We’re Watching, Reading, Etc: History of Police Reform

What We’re Watching, Reading, Etc: History of Police Reform


Every Monday, The Austin Common staff shares what we’re reading, watching, and listening to. This week, we’re focusing our recommendations on police reform & the upcoming election. For more, follow us on Instagram – @the_austin_common.

Read: Black Lives Matter’s Years of Pressure Paved Way For Sudden Police Overhaul

Find yourself looking around at our current political moment and wondering, ‘how did we get here?’. This article from the Wall Street Journal provides historical context and gives some much-deserved credit to the police reform and racial justice activists who have been working for years on these issues. It also points out why it’s so important for the public to get involved. City Council members from all over the country now have the political will to act on issues that had previously not been given the attention they deserve. 


PS – This story also features the work of local org – the Austin Justice Coalition. 

Read: A Discussion About How To Reform Policing

This article from the New York Times summarizes a discussion between several police reform advocates and experts from across the country. It’s a great read for anyone wanting a deeper understanding of what it means to “defund the police,” and how other cities have implemented major changes to their police departments. 

Read: Primary Runoff/ Special Election Voters Guide

Did you know there’s an election on July 14? It’s an important one that will…

  • Decide Austin’s next state senator 

  • Pick the Democratic candidate for Austin’s next District Attorney (who has a lot of influence over our local criminal justice system and police reform issues)

  • Pick the Democratic candidate for Austin’s next County Attorney (who has a lot of influence over racial disparities in our criminal justice system and the intersection between mental health and our criminal justice system).

Feeling a bit overwhelmed? Not really sure what these jobs are or who is running? That’s exactly what the nonpartisaon Voters Guide (created by the League of Women Voters) is for!


You can read a PDF version of the guide here or you can visit vote411.org for an interactive (and personalized) version of the guide. 

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