U.S. House Takes Action to Reform American Law Enforcement
WASHINGTON (March 4, 2021) — On Wednesday night, the House passed H.R. 1280, the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021. This bill would implement much needed reforms to American police forces through numerous policy changes aimed at strengthening accountability and rebuilding the trust that has deteriorated between communities — particularly communities of color — and law enforcement agencies.
Coalition to Stop Gun Violence Director of Federal Affairs Dakota Jablon issued the following statement:
“The House of Representatives has taken an important first step toward addressing police violence, accountability and reform. For the second time in nine months, the House has passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to begin the long overdue process of rooting out racism in American law enforcement agencies across the country.
“This bill does not address all areas of police reform but instead begins the process of creating and developing more just and equitable police forces for our nation. By enacting such meaningful provisions as prohibiting racial profiling, creating a police misconduct registry, adjusting legal standards to hold police accountable, and ending barbaric practices like chokeholds, this bill lays the groundwork for correcting centuries of systemic racism embedded in American police forces.
“Our nation watched in horror as insurrectionists stormed the United States Capitol on January 6. In the weeks that followed, we learned that dozens of those who took part in attacking our democratic system of government served in law enforcement departments from all over the country. If there were that many who chose to take part in an assault on our democratic values, how many more would abuse their badge in an assault of Black or Brown Americans if they believed there would be no consequences for such violence?
“The plague of systemic racism within our societal structures is one of the most pressing issues facing our nation today. We must continue to ensure that Black Americans feel protected and safe in their own communities, driving on their streets, sleeping in their own beds. This bill is a good start in that process — but we have a long way to go.
“Thank you to Representative Karen Bass, Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, and Speaker Nancy Pelosi for their leadership on and recognition of this issue. We strongly encourage Senate Majority Leader Schumer to move swiftly to bring this pressing issue up in the Senate and encourage senators from both parties to support and pass it into law. We must continue to strive for that more perfect union and build a nation that genuinely provides “liberty and justice for all.”
About the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence
Founded in 1974, the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence is the nation’s oldest gun violence prevention organization. We believe gun violence should be rare and abnormal. CSGV develops and advocates for evidence-based solutions to reduce gun injury and death in all its forms.