Those protests are still ongoing — in part because of a continuous series of highly-publicized incidents of police brutality against unarmed African Americans that have occured since Floyd’s death.
In the aftermath of such incidents, researchers have noticed an increase in violent crime in the affected community — a result of reduced civilian trust in the police due to fear of brutality, and reduced police willingness to respond to calls due to fear of negative publicity.
A 2017 Colby College-Duke University study, for instance, found that local Google searches related to police violence were strongly correlated with crime rates in a city in the aftermath of a police-involved killing.
So how should governments enforce laws and protect the public when police-community relations break down?
Many are turning to the private sector…
“Defund The Police” Often Means “Privatize The Police”
In the aftermath of the killing of Floyd, the Minneapolis City Council voted to defund its police force, in line with the demands of protesters — but also began spending $4,500 per day on private security guards.
And Chicago gave more than $1.2 million to three private security firms to protect businesses in the city’s south and west sides after announcing reforms last summer.
But this shift toward private-sector law enforcement isn’t peculiar to the aftermath of the George Floyd protests.
According to Grand View Research, the global public safety and security industry is expected to be worth more than $812 billion by 2025 — and is expected to grow at a 14.8% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) until then.