After Budget with No Criminal Justice Reforms, Advocates Call for New York to Lead Nation by Prioritizing Modernization of Police Data Reporting
Advocates from Communities United for Police Reform and other organizations from across New York were joined by Assemblyman Joseph Lentol and Senator Daniel Squadron to call for the prioritizing of criminal justice reform that advances transparency in the post-budget legislative session. Specifically, the group called for the passage of the Police-STAT Act (A.7698/S.6001), legislation sponsored by Lentol and Sqaudron that would requre state government to publicly report vital information about policing across the state.
“With the cost of technology decreasing and its adaptation increasing throughout government, data surrounding criminal justice is essential to ensure an equitable system,” said Assembly Member Joseph Lentol. “We have learned across all industries that data provides us with an in-depth opportunity to analyze policy and find ways to improve. I believe the Police-STAT Act will bring us into the 21st Century and create a more informed process. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the legislature to get this bill passed.”
The Police-STAT Act would modernize the reporting of data on policing activity throughout the state, a reform recognized throughout the country as critical for states to adopt.
“Transparency and clearer data about how laws are being enforced can have a positive impact for all involved,” said State Senator Daniel Squadron. “These common-sense reforms will improve the justice system. I thank Assemblymember Lentol, Communities United for Police Reform, advocates, and my colleagues.”
Police-STAT would require the statewide public reporting of data on:
- The total number of arrests and tickets for violations and misdemeanors, and information on their disposition.
- The race, ethnicity, age, and sex of people who are charged with violations or misdemeanors.
- The total number of people who die during an interaction with police or in police custody, including demographic information.
- The geographic location of enforcement activity and arrest-related deaths
“Yet again, communities of color were left behind in New York State budget negotiations, with no meaningful advancement of any criminal justice reforms,” said Alyssa Aguilera, Co-Executive Director, VOCAL-NY. “Passing the STAT Act this legislative session provides an opportunity for Governor Cuomo and the New York State legislature to show they value the safety and dignity of all New Yorkers. The STAT Act is commonsense legislation that will provide transparency and accountability for law enforcement activity that happens in our state. I urge our elected officials to pass the STAT Act this session.”
Federal law enforcement officials, criminal justice experts and communities across the nation have all acknowledged an enormous void in fully understanding the impact of policing activity, due to the lack of comprehensive data. There is no federal or state requirement to ensure such data is collected and publicly reported, meaning there is no public accounting of various types of police activity – from routine police practices to even the number of people who are killed during police encounters. Like states across the nation, New York lacks the data to provide policymakers, communities, law enforcement experts and the public with a comprehensive understanding of existing policing policies and practices – whether they are effective, who they are impacting and how, and how they can be improved.
“Currently, New York lacks a comprehensive system requiring the regular collection and reporting of law enforcement data leaving the state with no public accounting of police activity,” said Jason Starr, a member Long Island United for Police Reform. “These data are essential to fully understand which communities are policed and how, and create a much-needed check on the biased and discriminatory practices that threaten to further erode the trust between law enforcement and the community that is so essential to public safety.”
The President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing, co-chaired by former Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey and former Assistant U.S. Attorney General Laurie Robinson, stressed the need for increasing transparency through the improved collection and public reporting of policing data.
About Communities United for Police Reform
Communities United for Police Reform (CPR) is an unprecedented campaign to end discriminatory policing practices in New York, and to build a lasting movement that promotes public safety and policing practices based on cooperation and respect– not discriminatory targeting and harassment.
CPR brings together a movement of community members, lawyers, researchers and activists to work for change. The partners in this campaign come from all 5 boroughs, from all walks of life and represent many of those unfairly targeted the most by the NYPD. CPR is fighting for reforms that will promote community safety while ensuring that the NYPD protects and serves all New Yorkers.Topics: Police STAT Act