The Vermont Criminal Justice Council, born out of the predecessor Vermont Criminal Justice Training
Council, was established in December 2020 by the Vermont General Assembly to begin reformation of
the police profession. The ethnically and racially diverse twenty-four member Council includes
representatives of crime victims’ and racial justice advocacy organizations, the mental health
community, the Vermont Human Rights Commission, members of the public, departments of state
government, and law enforcement organizations. The Council commenced operations in January 2021.
The Council elected to release the following statement:
Derek Chauvin’s conviction in the murder of George Floyd, as well as numerous examples of police
brutality against people of color in the recent past, weigh heavily on the Vermont Criminal Justice
Council. The Council bears critical responsibilities surrounding law enforcement training, culture, policy,
and accountability. It is important that police reconcile and repair relationships as members of their
communities. In particular, leaders must continue to respect the humanity of those who have been
harmed as well as those who commit to doing the work.
The Council serves as the leading edge of policing in Vermont. We are responsible for training, as well as
the cultivation and shaping of culture for current and prospective law enforcement. We are taking
actions to transform law enforcement in Vermont through our newly formed committees on
professional regulation and hiring standards, as well as renewed commitment to fair and impartial
policing, training curriculum development, and reimagination of staffing and resources. It is our vision
that instances of police brutality and misconduct will not occur in Vermont.
We welcome all people to join us in our commitment not just to implement policies and training, but
also to develop a culture that protects and embraces communities in Vermont, including those that have
been historically marginalized.
Council Chair William Sorrell
Council co-Vice Chair Xusana Davis
Council co-Vice Chair Mark Anderson
Executive Director Heather Simons