Memphis Council Candidate Questionnaire: Erika Sugarmon’s Answers

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Erika Sugarmon1. If elected or re-elected to the city council, will you propose programs and/or initiatives to limit the number of arrests for minor offenses in the city?

Sugarmon:

Yes

Locking up the youth is not the answer. According to statistics a large no of youth give false confessions because they do not know the system. My goal is to inform the public about the system, so that they’ll engage the system, hold the system accountable, and not become a victim of the system.

 

2. If elected or re-elected to the city council, will you support a pre-booking diversion program for drug-relatedoffenses and for those suffering from mental health issues?

Sugarmon:

Yes

Yes, the answer is to treat addicts by giving them an opportunity to get clean and become productive citizens. Those who suffer from mental illness need to be treated by health care professionals and not incarcerated.

3. If elected or re-elected to the city council, will you support a policy to require transparency and democratic accountability before city agencies acquire new surveillance tools?

Sugarmon:

Yes

4. If elected or re-elected to the city council will you work to make stop and arrest data, including race and ethnicity data, available to the public quarterly?

Sugarmon:

Yes

5. If elected or re-elected to the city council what will you do to ensure a timely, transparent and independent investigation whenever an officer uses deadly force?

Sugarmon:

Yes, police need to use body cameras all of the time to protect themselves and the public. There needs to be consequences when they turn them off

6. Name 3 steps you would take as a council member to make the Community Law Enforcement Review Board (CLERB) more effective.

Sugarmon:

Yes! There needs to be full attendance. Many times there is not anyone from the Council present and this is not acceptable. Oversight and enforcement are key to making sure that people feel safe and restore faith in our MPD. There are already officers at schools so we need to revisit an updated version of an Officer Friendly program. Last, I want to hear the recommendations from the CLERB so that I can facilitate the concerns of the Board to the Council.

7. Would you support policies, programs or initiatives to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline?

Sugarmon:

Yes

Many times the youth are acting out because of peer pressure or the need to survive. Poverty and crime go hand in hand. I will advocate to increase literacy and vocational programs to the public especially for young adults in the age range of 19 to 24 where they may need more guidance and help when transitioning to adulthood and still do not have the skills sets to be responsible adults.

8. What does criminal justice reform mean to you?

Sugarmon:

People who have served their time should have their rights restored. Otherwise, it is double jeopardy. People who are incarcerated should be able to gain vocational skills so that when they have served their time they will be productive citizens. People who have committed only one nonviolent crime and who have served their time should have their rights restored. People should have a second chance at life. I believe everyone has something to give to their community and people are not disposable.

2019-09-12T16:37:21+00:00 September 12th, 2019|Categories: General News|