Protesters who want policing changes staged a sit-in at the Davenport city council meeting Wednesday night.
The protesters called for change in policing and race relations in the community. KWQC-TV 6 reports the protesters said systemic racism is prevalent in the Davenport community and city leaders need to stand up against racial injustices.
Protesters also said they would like a community discussion on the role of police officers in Davenport and would like to see a vote by city council on reform.
“We’d like to see them have a discussion,” Athena Gilbrith told the council. “But first and foremost we’d like to see them go through implicit bias training. It is very clear that almost all members on the city council have no clue as to what it is they’re doing with people in the marginalized community. They have no idea when they see racism. They wouldn’t know if it hit them in the head.”
Protesters also criticized Alderman Ray Ambrose after he was seen at a Second Amendment rally over the weekend.
“I attended a rally to support the police department and the second amendment,” Ambrose said. “I took a vow to uphold the constitution of the United States. People have free-speech and people have the right to bear arms. That’s why we live in this great country.”
Ambrose said he’s open to discussing the future of the police department and their budget. He said the city council is discussing the upcoming budget in the next month and now is a good time to put it on the agenda for discussion.
(Photo by KWQC-TV 6)