In the wake of the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, a powerful nationwide movement emerged calling to divert money from the police as a solution to police brutality and the systemic racism inherent in current policing methods. In the movement’s view, diverting money would mean passing local policies that take funds originally earmarked for police departments and reinvesting some of that money to establish community-led public safety initiatives, while the rest gets allocated to other important social services like education. In this memo, we share results from new polling of likely voters in Texas that shows there is popular support for reallocating funding away from police in this way. The demand for community-led public safety initiatives recognizes that there are community leaders that are better equipped to complete the functions that have historically been relegated to police, such as having a healthcare worker respond to a mental health crisis rather than an armed police officer.
A poll conducted from June 26 to June 27 by Data for Progress and The Justice Collaborative Institute found that not only a majority of Democratic voters (70%), but a majority of all voters (54%) supported creating new non-police agencies and transferring certain functions that police are doing right now to non-police who are better trained to do the job.