Police-Free Schools: Love Us, Don't Harm Us

We are demanding police-free schools!

It’s simple: "Love Us. Don’t Harm Us". Divest from police in schools, and invest in the social-emotional health and well-being of youth. Increased mental health supports, development and support for qualified teachers to reduce reliance on permanent substitutes, and violence interrupters within our schools and community will create a safer, healthier, more equitable school environment.

The Facts:

Police do not keep students safe. Their presence increases the likelihood that Black youth will be criminalized, arrested, or imprisoned for adolescent behavior or responses to trauma. Because of this:

  • D.C. police harass and handcuff Black youth as young as 9 years old.
  • 92% of school-based arrests are of Black students.
  • Black girls in D.C. are 30 times more likely to be arrested than white youth of any gender identity. 60% of girls arrested in D.C. are under the age of 15, and many are disciplined and referred to police for their responses to experiencing sexual violence.

The Demands:

DIVEST from all forms of police in D.C. schools, meaning:

  • Eliminate/abolish the MPD School Safety Division.
  • Prohibit all MPD from carrying weapons on & around school grounds (including school events).
  • Prohibit school-based arrests.
  • Prohibit all MPD from doing wellness checks or home visits.
  • Prohibit all MPD from picking up truant youth.
  • Prohibit all MPD from picking up truant youth.
  • Reduce the amount of school security guards in schools.
  • Reduce the amount of MPD cars outside the school during safe passage, and instead invest in violence interrupters and paying trained community members to support students in getting home safely.

INVEST in resources that create safer, healthier, more equitable school environments, meaning:

  • Create accountability for MPD and security guards who interact with youth in schools by creating a youth-centered complaint process.
  • End school security contracts and hire diverse safety squads that are preventative, trauma-informed and anti-oppressive.
    • Safety squads should be inclusive of mental health professionals, community members responsible for safe passage, de-escalators, outreach persons, and mutual aid coordinators.
  • Require school-based safety protocols that do not rely on police.
  • Expand school-based mental health supports.
  • Reinvest in a violence interruption model that is school-based, and ensuring a gender equity lens.