Thomson: In 2019, when I was chief of the Camden police force, we adopted a use-of-force policy with the help of Barry Friedman, a law professor at New York University, and the Policing Project he started there. Jason C. Johnson and James A. Gagliano write that reflexive calls from some corners to defund or abolish the police are foolhardy and dangerous. House Passes Police Reform Legislation But Issue Mired In Partisan Standoff The House passed legislation crafted in the wake of national protests set … To submit a letter to the editor for publication, write to, ‘‘I’m tired of our black kings being stopped, harassed and killed by the hands of those who are supposed to serve and protect,’’ said Jemeil Seon, 40, who climbed a lamppost during a protest in Brooklyn on June 6. Bazelon: Some states are starting to act. He was one of five black officers who sued the department for racial discrimination in 2007. Now we’re having a conversation that’s not just about how black communities are policed, and what reforms are required, but also about why we’ve invested exclusively in a criminalization model for public safety, instead of investing in housing, jobs, health care, education for black communities and fighting structural inequality. Guys who worked many hours would use their police job to get rest. Nigerian Senate in session (Guardian) RECOMMENDED ARTICLES. There are alternatives for crime-fighting too. Mayor Phil Smith brought up the use of deadly force when talking […] It’s called the Black Census Project. But in too many departments, officers never receive more training on the policy or even see it again unless they get in trouble. Bazelon: In a TV interview in June, Attorney General William Barr said, “I don’t think that the law-enforcement system is systemically racist.” The Justice Department will investigate George Floyd’s death, but Barr said he doesn’t think a larger pattern-or-practice investigation is currently warranted in Minneapolis. That has meant targeting police reform efforts supported by Democrats, such as shifting funding from police departments to social services like mental health and … Vanita Gupta is the president and chief executive of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. Alicia Garza: There’s a deep sense in the black community that when the police commit harms, they’re not held accountable, and of course that erodes trust. The police were ill prepared, and more than 50 people died. One person they named in that suit is the current head of the police union, Bob Kroll. Louisiana has a law, which the police unions lobbied for, that says investigators have to wait 14 days to question an officer who used a weapon or seriously injured or killed someone and 30 days to question an officer accused of other misconduct. Over the next two years, the Republican governor, Chris Christie, worked with Democrats in the county and city governments to disband the city Police Department and start a new county force. That’s what keeps me up at night. Three officers stood by or assisted as a fourth, Derek Chauvin, pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes. A few weeks ago, none of this was at the forefront. Bazelon: A city audit there last year showed that officers working outside jobs were regularly exceeding the maximum hours they were allowed for the week. Police Reform A curated collection of links The Record What are records? Goff: In a sense, it’s not that hard to imagine. In 2013, everyone in the city Police Department had to reapply for a new job. Because Police Departments are often strongly hierarchical, rank-and-file officers tend to rely on unions to give them a voice and shield them from what they see as arbitrary or punitive enforcement of the rules, in a job that relies heavily on officer discretion. There was borderline hatred between the community and the police. Bazelon: Scott, you’re known for making changes in Camden in the decade you were chief. The rate for solving murders was only 17 percent, and there were open-air drug markets all over the city. An officer stationed near the Brooklyn Bridge early this month amid the protests. Gupta: I’m wary of making assumptions about depolicing. Garza: We also shouldn’t accept a zero-sum game. Calls for police reform and additional police training come up against limited resources – people and money Mass. But why advance in the first place if it’s not necessary? The abolitionist group #8toAbolition calls reform “dangerous and irresponsible,” and writes that reformers mislead the public by offering steps “that have already been tried and failed.” Abolitionists seek a world without police or prisons. Shelby County Commission police reform police militarization Amber Mills Van Turner. They are the eyes on the neighborhood. paramedics shot on duty, return fire, killing suspect, Video: Cuffed suspect shoots Pa. LEO, escapes, San Francisco PD releases video of UOF incident a day after DA charges cop, Individual Access - Free COVID-19 Courses, Open the tools menu in your browser. Become a subscriber to join the discussion. The Problems With Policing the Police. Because civilians have an estimated 400 million guns in the United States — more than one for each of us — we probably need armed responders more than other countries that we might otherwise compare ourselves to, like Canada or Britain. Camden is not a utopia. But it requires political will over the long term. Vanita Gupta: Let’s talk about Congress. In Camden, when an officer uses force in the field, supervisors review the body-cam footage. As a country, we have to redistribute our resources. There is someone we might consult about a plausible police-reform agenda: the founding father of modern policing, Sir Robert Peel. New Jersey addressed that problem and in 2013 tightened state oversight. Since 2014, The Marshall Project has been curating some of the best criminal justice reporting from around the web. About 80 percent of respondents said that college costs were too high. The average tenure for a police chief in a major city department is two and a half years. If you can’t hire and fire officers, or even make a recommendation for discipline that sticks, then you don’t have real power. Goff: Imagine that you have a tool chest for solving social problems. 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