Federal government giving millions to group that supports defunding the police

Federal government giving millions to group that supports defunding the police
BROOKLYN, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES - 2020/06/01: A participant holding a Defund Police sign at the protest. Hundreds of protesters gathered flooded the streets of Crown Heights in Brooklyn to demand the defunding of the police force and to demonstrate against police brutality in the wake of George Floyd's death by Officer Derek Chauvin who kept his knee on Floyd's neck for more than 8 1/2 minutes, including 2 1/2 minutes after Floyd became unresponsive. (Photo by Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images)

[Ed. – Biden to reporter: ‘We are not defunding the police, and have not.’]

The federal government provides tens of millions of dollars each year to a nonprofit group that supports the movement to defund police departments and dismantle the criminal justice system.

Officials with the Brooklyn-based Vera Institute of Justice have urged the government to “radically dismantle” police departments in order to fix a system they say dehumanizes people of color. The institute is heavily funded by the federal government. So far this fiscal year, the Department of Justice, Department of Health and Human Services, and other agencies have awarded the Vera Institute more than $89 million in contracts and grants. The organization has received $811 million in federal funding since 2008, according to USA Spending, a federal budget database.

Vera’s support for the “defund the police” movement comes amid a contentious political debate over policing in America.

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