At the beginning of the year, Fairfax County NAACP published our 2017-2018 Advocacy Agenda which highlighted our organization’s priorities. The agenda was intended to challenge complacency in the school system, champion criminal justice reform, and encourage economic development and
job growth in minority neighborhoods here in Fairfax County. Since that time we've been monitoring the actions of Fairfax County leaders to evaluate their responsiveness to our concerns.

The attached Criminal Justice Report Card serves as a follow-up to the Advocacy Agenda. It indicates how well we believe each County official tasked with creating or enforcing criminal justice policies has performed against our agenda items. We hope you find this report card insightful andva useful tool for evaluating our county officials’ efforts to address the needs and concerns of the county’s minority community, who are often the most vulnerable with regard to criminal justice issues.

Executive Summary
Fairfax County has made some great strides with regard to criminal justice reform in the past two years. Thanks in large part to the leadership of Chairman Sharon Bulova, the county created an Ad-Hoc Commission review county police practices on topics such as use of force, civilian oversight, treatment of 1 mentally ill, and diversity. Recognizing that Fairfax County was not immune from the factors that led to the riots in Baltimore, Maryland or Ferguson, Missouri, Chairman Bulova proactively initiated a process to examine the county’s shortcomings with regard to criminal justice. Two years later, we’re now only the second jurisdiction in the state with both a Civilian Review Panel and an Independent Police Auditor. These changes were not easy, and faced stiff opposition from some members of the board who either wanted to toss out the recommendations altogether or render them ineffective. The only issue that received almost unanimous support was the Diversion First program which aims to divert mentally ill patients who commit non-violent offenses to mental health treatment facilities. Much work remains to be done to implement all the recommendations of the Commission; and even some the ones that were implemented need to bolstered either financially or from a policy perspective. The good news is that with a few exceptions, the majority of the Board of Supervisors, Chief of Police, and Sheriff generally support the reform efforts laid out by the board. The bad news is that a lot of their support is either weak or contingent on the county realizing tangible immediate financial benefits, whereas many of the biggest benefits of the changes are intangible such as improvement in civilian trust, or in other cases it takes several years to recognize cost savings. With a few exceptions, most county officials need to do a better job engaging with minority groups to better understand their collective concerns.

To read the full report click the link below.
FFX NAACP_Gradebook 2017_FINAL



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