Question 1: What leadership experience qualifies you for the City Council?
My name is Saciido Shaie, and I have lived in Minneapolis for the last 20 years. I have been organizing with marginalized communities, especially East African refugees. I have had the privilege of Serving in the Minneapolis Neighborhood Community Engagement Commission, helping to make our community more resilient and foster stronger community bonds.
More about me:
- 2000-2006: Teacher of Arabic and Islamic studies at Abubakr al-Sadiq Islamic Center
- 2006: National Community Award from Children and Family Services
- 2009-2015: Member of the Parent Leadership for Child Safety and Permanency
- 2009-2015: MN Department of Human Services Children’s Trust Fund (CTF)
- 2011-2015: Minneapolis Neighborhood and Community Engagement Commissioner
- 2012: Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee
- 2015: Minnesota “National Hero of the Year for Somalia”
- 2015: Co-Founder and member of the Cultural Ethnic Communities Leadership Council
- 2016: DFL Women Hall Of Fame: “Rising Star Award”
- 2017: Appointed by the MN Governor, Young Women’s Initiative Council
- 2017: National Coalition of the Juvenile Justice
- 2019: appointment to serve the US Global Leadership Coalition MN chapter
After a week of protests and unrest following the murder of George Floyd by a
Minneapolis police officer, 9 out of 12 members of the City Council pledged to
defund and dismantle what they consider to be a fundamentally broken police
Question 2: Do you share the assessment that MPD is fundamentally broken?
Question 3: Do you support defunding and dismantling MPD? If so, can you define what that means to you?
I am a firm believer in defunding, dismantling, and rebuilding the Minneapolis Police Department.
On June 26, the City Council voted unanimously for a ballot measure that would give voters the chance to remove MPD from the city charter and replace it with a new department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention.
Question 4: What do you think are the most important structural changes that would be made by this charter amendment if approved by voters? Would you vote for or against the charter amendment, assuming it makes it onto the ballot in November?
I believe that public safety and justice issues impact us all. There is a false narrative that in order to have safety, we must abandon justice reform; or for justice reform we must compromise safety. This is simply untrue. The truth is that we all desire safe spaces. We all desire a life free of violence and harm. As the mother of an 18 year old black son, I am concerned as every mother of a child of color, that sends their kids into society everyday. As mothers, we cannot protect our children from everything, but our kids shouldn’t come to harm from the group of people tasked with protecting them. I am a firm believer in defunding, dismantling, and rebuilding the Minneapolis Police Department. There is an inherent need for public safety officers to maintain peace and security, but it should never come at the cost of Black lives. We need to commit, after dismantling and defunding, to establishing a police force that serves all of us; not just the wealthy and privileged. We need a police force that sends mental health professionals and social workers to mental health calls; not armed officers. We need community resource officers that walk neighborhoods and build relationships; not armed officers in patrol cars. Minneapolis is one of the most diverse cities in the country, yet our police force is mostly white. This cannot continue any longer. Our police force needs to look like the community it serves, and this needs to start as we rebuild our police force. I believe that our police officers need to reflect the diversity of our community. That is why I believe we must have racial parity among our peace officers. Many police officers who have harmed communities of color have done so under qualified immunity. If you violate someone’s civil rights, you should be financially and criminally liable in court. Not only must we rebuild our police force, but we must demand that we hold every officer accountable for their actions. We must end qualified immunity.