Moorhead Police Chief comments on homelessness and progress on returning SRO's to city schools

Courtesy: Moorhead Police Department
Courtesy: Moorhead Police Department

(Moorhead, MN) -- Moorhead Police Chief Shannon Monroe spoke with WDAY Radio's Bonnie and Friends about an increase in the number of homeless people in the city and potential progress regarding placing SRO's back into Moorhead Area Public Schools (MAPS.


Monroe says Moorhead is seeing an uptick in the number of homeless people. He says this is consistent with a national trend, where larger metro areas are seeing more are seeing increased need for support services. Monroe also attributes the "generosity of our community" to the increase.

2022 Data from the FM Calition to End Homelessness shows an average of 957 people experienced homelessness each night in the F-M metro. Monroe says the need for services has increased over the last three years, and says many of the people who live in Moorhead stay by the Red River tree banks or near the homeless shelters, like Churches United by 21st Street and Highway 10.

School Resource Officers

Several police departments across Minnesota have pulled their School Resource Officers from various districts, including Moorhead Public Schools, over a one-word change in language that potentially put officers in legal jeopardy if they used physical restraints restraints on students. Last week, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison released legal clarification regarding the use of force by SRO's in schools across the state. The clarification says the standard for reasonable force was not changed in a recent update, which would allow for violent and non-violent students to be restrained based upon the reasonableness standard. Additionally, Ellison says authorities are still allowed to act prior to an injury, which was previously unclear before the recently issued clarification from Ellison.

"I think they are moving in the right direction, "said Monroe.

Moorhead's Police Department is speaking with legal council to determine if the clarified language is enough to return SRO's to schools. 

Original Air Date: 
Monday, September 25, 2023