MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - The man Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey nominated last week to be the city's first community safety commissioner, Dr. Cedric Alexander, had a clear message in his first sit-down interview with Fox 9 on Monday: he knows the Minneapolis Police Department needs more officers, and he'll work to change that — but there is also a lot more to be done to make the city safer.
"I know we don't have enough people. That cannot be the beginning of the conversation. That is a piece that's going to have to be addressed and addressed very aggressively, particularly as it relates to police, because they certainly are working with enormous shortage," he told Fox 9's weekend anchor Leah Beno.
"But the conversation is going to have to be now, how do we fight with what we have? And we got a lot of men and women out there in police and fire and emergency management that want to do a great job. And we're going to help them do that and I'm going to lead them "
Public safety and policing continue to be the most polarizing and often divisive issues in Minneapolis, but Alexander called for unity. " It becomes important for the community also to recognize we all got to get in this fight together," he said.
He also addressed questions about his salary and discussed his first impressions of Minneapolis. Listen to the full interview above.