Albuquerque proposes new agency amid calls for police reform

New Mexico

The US and New Mexico flags fly before the upcoming mid-term elections in Albuquerque, New Mexico on October 1, 2018. (Photo by Mark RALSTON / AFP) (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP via Getty Images)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller is proposing the creation of a new city department to focus on community safety as groups have been calling for elected leaders to defund the police department amid the latest national wave of protests over use of force.

Keller says the new department would be made up of social workers and other civilian professionals who would offer another option to dispatching police or firefighters and paramedics when people call 911.

The plan calls for reallocating funding. City officials don’t have an exact price tag yet but estimate it will be in the tens of millions of dollars.

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