How reform gave way to ‘Defund the Police' in Seattle

Seattle spent nearly a decade reforming its police department and branding itself as an example of how to fix a broken system prone to violence and racial bias. Public trust improved and the use of force declined. But the protests of 2020 changed perspectives in Seattle so much that now it is a leader in taking money from the police to fund community-based responses to social problems and low-level crime. The community is divided, largely along racial and ideological lines, over whether to "defund" the police, whether police reform is even possible, and how to reimagine public safety.

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