Tulsa City Council Talks Equality Report
TULSA, Oklahoma - The Tulsa City Council discussed data from the Equality Indicators Report with a panel of specialists Wednesday night.
The report found that African American Tulsans are two times more likely to be arrested than white citizens.
In attendance was Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum, several other city councilors, and other panelists. They answered several questions and covered topics ranging from poverty to the justice system. There were several comments from panelists about people getting stuck in the court systems because they can't pay their fines and fees and what the council could do to address that issue.
One person asked, "do you believe current practices criminalize poverty?" A woman answered "100 percent."
Another topic that came up was whether police should have made certain arrests or not. A panelist brought up the future of the office of independent monitor. The initial plan scrapped by Mayor Bynum and is still being reformatted.
"It is remarkable to me that our police department is one of the few democratic institutions that we have that don't have public oversight of some kind. I think in order to have a strong democracy we need to be able to have a very direct citizen light oversight," said one of the panelists.