Erase the Gang Database

The Chicago Police Department maintains two massive gang databases, collectively labeling more than 280,000 people as “gang members.” 95% of those people listed are people of color, most being young men in their late teens and 20s, but also thousands being Black and Latinx youth and elders. The data compiled in the database is shared with over 500 agencies, including Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the FBI.

Being in the gang database has a devastating impact, making encounters with police more frequent, and often more violent. It can also have a negative impact on bail, bond, conviction, sentencing, and parole decisions. And it can create barriers to education, housing, employment, and immigration relief. 

Sign the petition

City council has the opportunity to take the crucial step in dissolving the ‘Gang Database’ and investing in Chicagoans to purposefully address and center the needs of their community. Demand your Elder, the Public Safety Committee and Mayor Lori Lightfoot abolish the gang database once and for all.

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Pass the Community Restoration Ordinance

CRO is a community initiated proposal that proactively places financial and structural investment in Chicago communities, while retroactively addressing harm done under the Gang Database. While the ‘Gang Database’ acts as a tool for criminalization for CPD, the CRO would act as a public safety resource for Chicagoans, centering reparations and restorative practices for those that have suffered from being included in CPD’s database, and in policing overall.

Implement the peace book

Overview

The Peace Book has two components: 1) a resource guide and application directing community members to healing and peacekeeping resources and 2) City-wide and neighborhood based commissions that will coordinate peacekeeping activities.

How does it work?
  • City-wide Commissioners will collect and analyze data about their Ward, coordinate peacekeeping efforts across Wards, and support in disseminating information about the Peace Book initiative.
  • Youth are trained by community based orgs as Peace Keepers that will interrupt violence, facilitate peacekeeping programs, and develop resource materials.
  • Ward Commissioners will do needs assessments by speaking with community members, bringing together rival factions, and overseeing negotiated peace treaties.
Goals
Launch pilot Peace Book programming in the 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 20th Wards.
  1. Reduce gun violence by at least 60% by overseeing peace treaties, peace hubs, and safe zones;
  2. Create an infrastructure of peace and support for young people doing the work of peacekeeping;
  3. Resource communities experiencing violence and over-policing; and
  4. Nourish the next generation of leaders and peacekeepers.
What does the peace book add that other programs don't?
Unlike existing City violence prevention efforts, the Peace Book:
  • is youth-led. When it comes to reducing violence and cultivating peace among our City’s youth, young people have unique expertise. The City’s existing programs don’t give young people a leading role in violence prevention.
  • is centralized. While existing resources are a patchwork of smaller offices and organizations, the Peace Book provides communities with holistic access to information, resources, peacekeeping, restorative justice, and training.
  • has young people’s trust. The Peace Book is led and directed by youth and other community members with whom young people already have positive relationships.

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The Erase the Gang Database Coalition is made up of organizations in Chicago, Illinois organizing against criminalization, surveillance, incercation and police violence. 

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