The City of Chicago has appointed seven community leaders to serve on the new interim Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability, a commission initially approved by the Chicago City Council in July 2021 to increase police oversight and community engagement in the city.
The commission aims to play a large role in the operations of the Chicago Police Department (CPD) and public safety initiatives, including in developing and setting police department policies; reviewing the CPD budget; aid in the selection process of top CPD officials; increasing transparency and community engagement; and recommending strategies for violence prevention in public safety, among other responsibilities.
The Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability will serve in tandem with District Councils, which are district-specific boards made up of three elected officials who serve four-year terms. Members of District Councils in the 22 police districts in Chicago will be elected in municipal elections, while members of the Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability will be nominated by District Councils and selected by the mayor.
The seven interim members of the Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability are:
- Dr. Beth Brown — Pastor, Lincoln Park Presbyterian Church
- Anthony Driver Jr. — Vice President, APS & Associates
- Oswaldo Gomez — Program Coordinator, Grassroots Alliance for Police Accountability
- Yvette Loizon — Partner, Clifford Law Offices
- Cliff Nellis — Executive Director, Lawndale Christian Legal Center
- Remel Terry — Training Project Manager and Developer, JPMorgan Chase
- Isaac Troncoso — Chief Of Staff to the CEO, CityBase
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot initially promised to enact a community oversight board to review the CPD within her first 100 days in office in 2019. The commission was founded after widespread national and local activism surrounding police brutality. In March 2021, two civilians were shot and killed by CPD officers, including a 13-year-old named Adam Toledo and a 22-year-old named Anthony Alvarez, which renewed conversation across the city about police oversight.
By fall 2023, seven members will be nominated and selected by the mayor to serve four-year terms as commissioners on the Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability. Commissioners will include civilians from all regions of the city, and five of the seven commissioners must bring at least five years of experience in social work, public safety, community organizing, law, civil rights and other sectors to their role on the commission.