In the Media

How Do Black Lawmakers and Activists View ‘Defunding the NYPD’? It’s Complicated

08/28/2020
Gotham Gazette

The New York City Council and Mayor Bill de Blasio crafted an $88.2 billion budget for the current fiscal year in what was one of the most contentious budget negotiations in years, coming amid a pandemic-caused recession and a resurgent racial justice movement that sought to “Defund the NYPD” and redirect some of its massive resources to social services in communities of color.

More than 300,000 NYPD officer complaints over 35 years released in new database

08/20/2020
AM NY

Over 300,000 complaints about New York Police Department officer misconduct have been released due to a new database from the New York Civil Liberties Union published Thursday.

The complaints all come from reports compiled from the New York City Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB), an independent agency that investigates complaints of police wrongdoing against civilians.

The database contains information about 323,911 complaints dating back to 1985 concerning 81,550 different officers. That’s an average of 923 complaints a year.

Cops fight against making disciplinary records public

08/20/2020
Amsterdam News

Local authorities continue to fight the public over making disciplinary records public. However, the public’s fighting back.

This week, The Legal Aid Society filed an amicus brief against the efforts of five police unions to block public access to the disciplinary records after Albany repealed Section 50-a which made records and accounts of police misconduct unavailable to civilians. In the brief, members of The Legal Aid Society state that the police’s latest attempt to block Section 50-a is emblematic of the culture cops have created.

Waiting compass on lawsuit that asks to reestablish Police Secrecy Law 50-A

08/18/2020
El Diario

Tuesday a hearing was held to hear the demand of several unions of fire police and correctional agents of the city of New York that request the repeal of the Police Secrecy Law (50-A) be reversed. The appearance was presided over by the judge of the Federal Court, Katherine Failla.

Meanwhile, civil rights defenders, elected officials, and members of a broad coalition of activists rejected the claim raised in a class-action lawsuit by the unions.

NYPD pulling the plug on 'Sentiment Meter,' official says

08/16/2020
Newsday

The New York Police Department is pulling the plug on the “Sentiment Meter,” a multimillion-dollar smartphone polling project used to gauge public reaction to officers and attitudes about safety in the Big Apple, a police official said.

A brainchild of the Brooklyn company ELUCD, the polling methodology was underway by 2017 and pinged about 7,500 smartphones each month to determine how members of the public felt about the job the NYPD was doing. 

The movement to defund police has won historic victories across the US. What's next?

08/15/2020
Guardian

In the days after the killing of George Floyd, an extraordinary wave of mass protests erupted across the US, with demonstrators setting fire to police buildings and cars, shutting down freeways and bridges and storming city halls and neighborhoods.

Amid familiar chants of Black Lives Matter, a new slogan emerged: “Defund the police.”

Keep it in the closet: The fight over misconduct records

08/06/2020
Amsterdam News

It wasn’t even a month old and those in uniform had begun to push back.

On July 14, officials from the Police Benevolent Association, Correction Officers Benevolent Association, the Uniformed Firefighters Association of Greater New York and a host of other law enforcement unions filed a lawsuit to block New York City’s government from publishing its planned databases of police misconduct.

How Police Unions Fight Reform

Activists insist that police departments must change. For half a century, New York City’s P.B.A. has successfully resisted such demands.
07/27/2020
New Yorker

In May, just days after a Minneapolis police officer killed George Floyd, Lieutenant Bob Kroll, the bellicose leader of the city’s police union, described Floyd as a violent criminal, said that the protesters who had gathered to lament his death were terrorists, and complained that they weren’t being treated more roughly by police. Kroll, who has spoken unsentimentally about being involved in three shootings himself, said that he was fighting to get the accused officers reinstated. In the following days, the Kentucky police union rallied around officers who had fatally shot an E.M.T.

We looked at protester demands from across the nation and compared them with recent police reforms.

Protesters have made their demands clear, and cities are starting to respond. But is it enough?
07/20/2020
USA Today

In the 18 days after the death of George Floyd, 16 states introduced, amended, or passed various police-reform bills.

We looked at what protesters are asking for and what changes have actually been implemented. While a handful of new policies met demands, most local officials and law enforcement agencies failed to fulfill expectations.  

Defunding law enforcement

Lentory Johnson knows what "defund the police" means to her — and she has a perspective based on a deeply personal experience.

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