MILWAUKEE — A change in leadership at the top of the Milwaukee Police Department brings a lot of expectations for the community. People from all around the city spoke about what they want to see their new leader focus on.
As Michael Brunson was sworn in as the newest Milwaukee Police Chief, people were already wondering what’s ahead. For some of the people we spoke to, they wanted to see something different from the Milwaukee Police Department especially following the Black Lives Matter protests.
“Just because of the color of your skin doesn’t mean you should be discriminated against,” said Rebecca Nunez, north side resident. “They definitely need to clean up the police system.”
“Having a police chief that is willing to be an active participant in change, really listening to the protestors, sitting down with them hearing what some of their concerns are,” said Sharon McNally, a west-side resident of Milwaukee.
Some people even called for less police funding.
“I would like to see divestment from police because a lot of our other public services like public health care and human services are under-resourced,” said Robert Agnew, north side resident.
Others like Ida Curtis, who lives near downtown said she doesn’t feel safe in her neighborhood. She wants more police on her streets stopping violent crime.
“Certain areas seem to not get a lot of attention,” said Curtis. “People die around there and nothing seems to be changing.”
A mother of two, Barbara Cerda, said she feels safe in the neighborhood and does not need more police officers on her streets. She said that doesn’t make people in her mainly Hispanic neighborhood feel comfortable. Instead, she just wants more officers available when someone calls for help.
“An issue I’ve had is the lack of response when I have called police. It’s like they are down the block and they come an hour later,” said Cerda.
Chief Brunson is now the acting police chief. No word if he will serve out the remainder of former Chief Alfonso Morales’ contract.