Citizen Review Board
The City of Cedar Rapids is working to establish an independent Citizen Review Board (CRB) to further community relations and police accountability. An ordinance outlining the formation and duties of the CRB was presented to Cedar Rapids City Council on January 26, 2021, and received final approval February 9, 2021.
VIEW THE CRB ORDINANCE
Board Membership and Application Information
Thank you for your interest in serving on the City of Cedar Rapids Citizen Review Board (CRB). The purpose of the CRB is to ensure fair and professional law enforcement that is constitutional, effective, and responsive to the standards, values, and needs of those to be served.
The City will be accepting applications for appointments to the nine member CRB through May 31, 2021, with appointments in June.
Demographic, Employment and Volunteerism Questions
We encourage you to respond to the demographic questions on the application form regarding gender and race and include information related to relevant employment and volunteer activity. This information is important to ensure that we meet requirements and goals of state and local ordinances regarding racial and gender balance of the CRB membership. In addition, please include information regarding active volunteerism or employment at one of the following or similar organizations: NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens), Iowa Asian Alliance, ASJ (Advocates for Social Justice), United We March Forward, United Way, a United Way funded service provider, NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), or another organization, service provider, or company that works with , and/or advocates for, underrepresented segments of the population in the areas of mental health, physical health, homelessness, food insecurity, or similar social issues.
Time Commitment and Training Requirements
The CRB will have regularly scheduled meetings once per month. In addition, as a requirement for service, voting members of the CRB must agree to complete the following:
- Complete a training course that is a minimum of, but not limited to, thirty (30) hours with a curriculum as determined by the Chief of Police to be completed within six (6) months of appointment;
- In addition, each voting member must receive an additional ten (10) hours of training per year with a curriculum as determined by the Chief; and
- Each voting member must accompany an on-duty police officer employed by the CRPD for a minimum of sixteen (16) hours per year and for a minimum of four (4) hours per occasion.
The terms of the first set of members will be staggered as follows:
- Three (3) members serving one (1) year terms;
- Three (3) members serving two (2) year terms; and
- Three (3) members serving three (3) year terms
CRB Survey Results
The City of Cedar Rapids launched a survey to seek feedback from residents as we work to establish the framework for an independent Citizen Review Board (CRB). The survey closed on September 30, 2020.
*Survey results open as excel documents
What is a Citizen Review Board?
A Citizen Review Board is an independent body created to influence and change police practices to ensure community law enforcement is effective and responsive to the standards, values, and needs of those to be served. There are approximately 150 Citizen Review Boards currently across the United States, each with a different emphasis and activities conducted. As the Cedar Rapids CRB is developed, it will be important to build support and tailor the CRB to the specific needs of our community.
The goal of the Cedar Rapids Citizen Review Board (CRB) is to ensure public safety accountability, bolster confidence in police, increase and improve public cooperation, and make our community safer for everyone. In order to ensure success of the program, the City is working to develop a model that follows best practices from around the country, while also taking into account the unique needs of the Cedar Rapids community.
- Advocates for Social Justice - https://www.facebook.com/ASJBLM/
- National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement (NACOLE) - https://www.nacole.org/
- The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) - https://www.calea.org/
- President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing - https://cops.usdoj.gov/pdf/taskforce/taskforce_finalreport.pdf
Resolution of Support for Black Lives Matter & Advocates
Cedar Rapids City Council passed a resolution on June 19, 2020 officially declaring their support and commitment to addressing priorities brought to the City through the local Black Lives Matter Movement and Advocates for Social Justice. At the meeting, City Council approved and agreed to move forward on all seven priorities, with establishment of a Citizen Review Board being agreed upon by both groups as the highest priority to implement quickly. A copy of the resolution can be found on the city’s website..
Public Engagement Framework
The City developed a 90-day plan for public engagement to establish the framework for an independent Citizen Review Board (CRB). The process encompassed three phases: Process Development, Public Engagement, and Results/Recommendations. Presentations regarding progress for City Council and the public took place on July 28, August 25 and September 22 (or at a Council special meeting in September).
90-Day Action Plan