Lori Lightfoot

LIVE: Mayor Lightfoot to Make Announcement With Chicago Police, Rep. Bobby Rush

Lightfoot is expected to speak at 1 p.m. CST

NOTE: The 1 p.m. press conference will be streamed live in the player above.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot is scheduled to make an announcement Thursday alongside representatives of the Chicago Police Department and U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush.

Details of the announcement - scheduled to take place at a news conference beginning at 1 p.m. at City Hall - were not immediately clear. It comes as the city continues to see protests and demonstrations against police brutality in the wake of the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25.

Several of those protests have called on Lightfoot to both decrease funding for the Chicago Police Department, and remove officers from Chicago Public Schools - both actions the mayor has indicated she is reluctant to take.

In a television appearance Sunday night, Lightfoot teased "monumental reforms" to be announced in the coming days but said she believed the push to defund police is not "really what's underlying" the continued demonstrations.

"I’m hoping that we're going to announce soon some pretty monumental reforms that we pushed for and we've won, and to set the stage for what I know is going to be a long fight around police reform," Lightfoot said on "Kasie DC" on MSNBC, highlighting police contracts as "a significant part of the problem."

"We've got to get unions to understand that they've got to be part of the solution, and not part of the problem," she continued.

"First of all, we've got to speak our values through these contracts. We've got to lay out a very clear set of principles around reform and accountability and not allow the extraordinary due process that police officers get to be a road block to accountability," Lightfoot added.

When asked about protesters' calls to defund police, Lightfoot demurred as she has done before in recent days.

"I think what's really underlying this is communities that have been disinvested in for decades and are crying out for resources want resources put into their communities and I agree with that 100%," Lightfoot said. "I ran on this. And we have taken very specific steps to make sure that our communities of color in particular have the resources that they need to be able to thrive and be vibrant."

"We know that people will need public safety, but they also need jobs, they need opportunity. They need a pipeline to legitimate economy," Lightfoot continued. "And that's what we have to bring as cities. It's not an either/or proposition, it's both. And what needs to lead is making investments in communities around public safety, making investments in mental health, closing health care disparities, and giving people the opportunity to have a pipeline to legitimate jobs in the economy."

When pressed specifically on the question of defunding the Chicago Police Department, Lightfoot said she didn't believe that was the main issue at the center of the protests.

"I don't think that is really what's underlying this," she said. "What I’m hearing in my city and what I’m watching across the country is this desire and demand for resources. And we have an obligation to answer that demand, and that's precisely what we're doing in Chicago and will continue to be doing that."

Contact Us