By Jim Williams

(CBS) – One year ago, the explosive Laquan McDonald video was released.

It sparked protests and a series of police reforms, but will those reforms make a difference?

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CBS 2’s Jim Williams reports.

The Emanuel Administration released a progress report on the police reforms, which include greater transparency, civilian oversight and tactics to help officers deescalate potentially violent encounters.

It will be a tall order to convince some Chicagoans new reforms will make a new difference.

In the year since the city was forced to release video showing the police killing of Laquan McDonald, the response has played out in  protests, in the mayor’s office and among the officers on the street, now fighting crime under a series of reforms.

They are overseen by Anne Kirkpatrick, who understands that skeptics wonder if the reforms will curb police misconduct.

“Until they see the change, feel the change and experience the change, people by nature are going to be skeptical. But the change is going on,” she says.

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The changes were discussed at a forum called “Laquan’s Legacy,” sponsored by the Better Government Association.

Frank Chapman of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression doubts the reforms will have much impact.

“There’s a racist culture in the police department that that is not addressing,” he said.

Chapman wants an elected police accountability council.

Police board president Lori Lightfoot calls it a terrible idea.

“We know how elections work in this city and in this state. If we have an elected board, the people with money are going to be the people who win those elected spots,” she said.

Critics say the reforms have not made Chicago safer, pointing to the city’s rising number of murders.

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The U.S. Justice Department’s investigation into the Chicago Police Department has not yet been released.