Mayor Kevin Faulconer details the changes implemented by SDPD and the continued reopening of San Diego

Big changes are coming to San Diego in regards to police reform.

Shortly after the death of George Floyd, many cities across the county announced they will do away with the carotid restraint, the San Diego Police Department included.

Furthermore, Friday is the day more businesses are able to reopen their doors amid the coronavirus pandemic.

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer discussed the changes to the police department and the continued reopening of businesses with KUSI’s Lauren Phinney on Good Morning San Diego.

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Faulconer Urges Vigilance as County Reopens More Industries Closed to COVID-19

As San Diego County moves into the next steps of reopening various industries shuttered for months due to COVID-19, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer Thursday urged San Diegans to continue exercising caution to keep local hospital systems from being overwhelmed.

On Friday, bars, gyms, hotels and movie theaters are among the sectors slated to reopen.

In his last daily COVID-19 news conference for the foreseeable future, Faulconer praised the efforts of San Diegans to slow the virus’ spread, as well as the work of essential workers to keep city services running during the pandemic.

“The facts clearly show that San Diegans have helped flatten the curve and slow the spread of this virus,” said Faulconer.

However, the mayor echoed warnings from county health officials that precautions should be taken to prevent a potential spike in cases.

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Mayor Kevin Faulconer on the future of policing in San Diego

California mayors to push for police reforms, not 'defunding'

San Diego, the state's second-largest city, voted to increase police funds this week. However, Mayor Kevin Faulconer said "it's not going to be business as usual" and noted the earlier decision for police to immediately stop using so-called carotid restraints, also known as a sleeper hold, which involves using an arm to apply pressure to the sides of the neck in a move that can almost immediately block blood flow and render someone unconscious. 

Activists say the hold is used disproportionately against people of color. Many departments already ban or restrict its use.

Faulconer said police are too often drawn into matters involving homelessness and mental illness, when in many cases other health providers should be involved — "not our police department." 

The mayors also called for nearly $1 billion in spending in the state's pending budget to address the widespread homelessness crisis, including providing dollars for shelter, health care and other services needed to keep people off the streets. 

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SDPD, mayor working on de-escalation policies

Mayor Kevin Faulconer says the city and San Diego police are working together on de-escalation policies.

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Mayor: SDPD developing new de-escalation policy in response to community feedback

Mayor Kevin Faulconer announced Wednesday that San Diego Police Department officials are developing a new de-escalation policy, which a department spokesman said should be implemented by next week.

The Police Department currently trains its officers in de-escalation techniques and has language addressing the approach — emphasizing that officers do all they can to avoid a physical confrontation — in its use-of-force procedure. But the new standalone policy “will be more robust,” Faulconer said during a Wednesday afternoon news conference.

Faulconer said the new policy will give “officers clear rules of the road on how to safely control a situation, and resolve it, with lower levels of force.”

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Faulconer, Other Mayors Push State For Homeless Funding Amid Coronavirus

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer joined his counterparts from other large California cities Wednesday, calling on the state to approve millions of dollars to address the homelessness crisis during, and beyond, the coronavirus pandemic.

In an online conference, members of the Big City Mayors coalition backed Gov. Gavin Newsom's proposal to earmark $600 million in federal CARES Act funding for homelessness solutions such as purchasing hotels and motels. They also urged legislators to approve $350 million in "flexible" funds for other intervention strategies to ensure homeless people who are moved into shelters or hotels under the state's Project Roomkey program during the pandemic don't wind up back on the streets.

"We've all been working during this crisis and during the pandemic to get folks off the street primarily for health and safety reasons," Faulconer said. "But as we look toward the future, how do we actually provide that?

"Here in San Diego we've opened up our convention center, and we have over 1,400 folks that we've been able to get safely off the streets from our bridge shelters to allow for social distancing," he said. "It's been a tremendous success so far. But as we are looking to getting on the other side of this pandemic, what we are all focused on is having both the resources and the ability and the places to give folks that permanent home. That's why these dollars are going to be so important. Not only the dollars for hotel acquisition but the flexible dollars for supportive services, because we are all interested in the long term."

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San Diego mayor explains why he didn’t implement a curfew during George Floyd protests

The city of San Diego broke from national trends in deciding not to enforce city-wide curfews like those seen in New York, Minneapolis, Atlanta and other areas of the country.

“We encourage peaceful protests,” Mayor Kevin Faulconer told CNBC. “That’s part of who we are as Americans and that’s how you affect change.” 

Protests continued over the weekend In San Diego County, marking almost two weeks of daily demonstrations since the death of George Floyd.

Faulconer said by not implementing a curfew he intended to send a message of support to protesters.

“You want to have a culture that is open to folks saying, ‘This is our ability to demonstrate,’” said Faulconer. 

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San Diego Mayor: Coronavirus reopening is all about the 'new normal' ...

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer on reopening businesses and adhering to coronavirus guidelines.

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San Diego Police to stop using carotid restraint

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, Police Chief David Nisleit, and city councilmembers announced Monday that police would stop the use of a hotly criticized use-of-force technique.

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