Police reform in America’s largest city has taken a strange turn in 2017.
Right to Know Act
The Right To Know Act is a legislative package that aims to protect the civil and human rights of New Yorkers while promoting communication, transparency and accountability in everyday interactions between the NYPD and the public. New Yorkers want to live in a safe city where the police treat all residents with dignity and respect, and where police are not considered to be above the law.
The new semiannual report from the Civilian Complaint Review Board revealed that the New York Police Department is ignoring their recommendations and refusing to provide names and badge numbers to citizens.
The New York City Council passed a pair of landmark police-reform bills Tuesday — one by a wide margin and one more narrowly — that aim to impose strict rules on how NYPD cops search and question New Yorkers.
Introduction 541-C, which would require the NYPD to instruct officers on how to get consent from people they search without a warrant, passed 37 votes to 13 at the Council's last meeting of the year. The bill would also require the Police Department to develop policies for recording such searches and explicitly telling civilians that they can refuse to be searched.
On Tuesday, the New York City Council passed two police reform bills. One marks a vital step toward police reform and accountability. The other takes our city in the wrong direction.
The City Council passed the Right to Know Act, a package of police reform bills, despite opposition from some Council members over a last-minute compromise made to appease the NYPD.
One bill, sponsored by Bronx Councilman Ritchie Torres, a speaker candidate, mandates that cops to identify themselves when making a stop. This bill was changed to have the identification requirement only cover stops involving suspicion of criminal activity. The other bill, sponsored by Brooklyn Councilman Antonio Reynoso, requires cops to ask for permission before searching an individual.
Melissa Mark-Viverito made sure her final stated meeting as city council speaker was a full agenda — and it was filled with goodbyes and controversies.
At issue were two bills dealing with how police and the public interact.
One requires that the NYPD direct officers to search only after obtaining "voluntary, knowing, and intelligent consent."
The second requires police give out business cards, including name, rank, and shield number, while noting 311 can be called to submit comments about the encounter.
The City Council is set to vote Tuesday on a package of major police accountability legislation that aims to protect New Yorkers from improper police searches. The pair of bills, known together as the Right to Know Act, passed the Council's Committee on Public Safety in a split vote on Monday.
This Tuesday, New York City Council members will vote on the two-headed package of bills known as the Right To Know Act. The original two pieces of legislation, that are now versions, Intro 541-C and Intro 182-D, were drafted in an effort to improve police accountability, communication and transparency during police encounters.
City Council legislation meant to force NYPD officers to identify themselves in certain nonemergency encounters — and distribute business cards when there is no arrest or summons — is continuing to lose support from foes of police misconduct.
The groups say the bill ultimately creates loopholes that cops can exploit.
On Tuesday, the New York City Council will vote on two police accountability bills. One represents real reform that will protect New Yorkers' privacy rights when police ask to search them without probable cause. The other is faux reform that is the result of a backroom deal between powerful politicians and the New York Police Department.