Mayor London Breed on the Rejection of the Reappointment of San Francisco Police Commissioner Debra Walker

Mayor London N. Breed issued the following statement on the rejection of the reappointment of Debra Walker to the San Francisco Police Commission by the Board of Supervisors’ Rules Committee:
June 05, 2024

On Monday, members of the Board of Supervisors Rules Committee showed us that politics, not public safety, are their top priority when they rejected my nomination of Debra Walker to continue serving as Police Commissioner. 

Proposition E, which San Francisco voters overwhelmingly passed in March, sent a clear message that San Franciscans want our City’s leaders to put more police officers on our streets, to champion new technology that will prevent and stop criminal activity, and advance criminal investigations to restore accountability and faith in our criminal justice system. What happened at the Rules committee earlier this week is another example of the Board of Supervisors prioritizing obstruction and theater over a safer, stronger, more inclusive San Francisco. 

Last year, the City saw the lowest crime rate in over a decade and we continue to see crime trending downward. Our efforts are working. Without a doubt, Debra has been a key figure behind the momentum to give our police officers the tools they need and to produce better outcomes for our communities. 

Our residents deserve leaders like Debra Walker. She listens to the community, advances common sense policies, and supports public safety initiatives that work for our City. When the Department of Justice made reform recommendations for our Police Department to complete, Debra was instrumental in her advocacy and support to ensure SFPD adopted all 272 recommendations. 

What I admire most about Debra Walker is that she is a relentless voice, who loves San Francisco, and the diversity and creativity that makes our City so great. A proud member of our city’s LGBTQ community, Debra has worked for decades standing up for her community and all communities. She is a proven ally that has helped heal and foster trust, and strengthened relations between our police and the LGBTQ community.

Debra does more than just engage with the community – she listens and she moves forward policies that make San Francisco a better place for all.   

In 2022, I was proud to appoint Debra Walker to the San Francisco Police Commission and I am proud to nominate her for reappointment.  

Today, I’m calling on the Board of Supervisors to move past politics and division, and support Debra Walker to serve on the Police Commission. This is a pivotal time for public safety in San Francisco. We are seeing progress. We can’t go backwards.

Community Support for Commissioner Debra Walker

"As a fellow police commissioner,” said Police Commissioner Larry Yee. “Debra Walker has been a strong partner in working with me on public safety issues that impact our Chinese community across the city. This is especially a critical time for her to be able to continue her role as police commissioner to further advance the progress we have made on public safety, and implement Prop E which was authored by Mayor Breed and passed by voters in March. I urge the Supervisors to join Mayor Breed in supporting Debra’s reappointment.”

“Debra is a staunch advocate for the LGBTQ community and at a time when our community, specifically the Black trans women disproportionately experiences fatal violence,” said Lisa Williams, Board Member, Alice B. Toklas. “Commissioner Walker’s representation on the Police Commission is needed more than ever to ensure we are included in public safety conversations.”

“I am supporting Debra’s reappointment to the police commission,” said Roma Guy, Long-Time Healthcare and Homelessness Services Expert, Social Justice Advocate, and Community Organization Founder. “She has demonstrated, in our very polarized environment, that she had an ability to bring her listening skills and problem solving into San Francisco’s criminal justice discussions. Her ability to respect everyone with attention to evidence is essential to decisions that are transparent that can measure impact for further reforms.”

“I wholeheartedly support Debra Walker to continue to serve the City as Police Commissioner,” said Joanne Lee, Executive Director of Edge on the Square. “I know that Debra will advance the important work that our City and community need. I hope to see her getting reappointed.”