Because it is so long overdue! Most cops are good cops, but I have been raising hell about abuses for 14 years. Major changes are coming. 🙂
Excerpts from the Article:
Most Americans believe that change must be made to law enforcement across the nation and that reforms are needed to reduce police brutality against Black Americans, a poll released Monday found.
Among the ideas embraced by many of those polled June 18-22 by Ipsos on behalf of Public Agenda and USA TODAY:
• Force officers to reapply for their jobs to help weed out bad cops.
• Limit the scope of policing to focus on serious and violent crimes.
• Cut off police departments’ ability to buy military gear.
Those reforms are in addition to widespread and bipartisan support for more training on de-escalation tactics and racial biases, as well as numerous reforms aimed at increasing transparency.
The poll surveyed 1,113 U.S. adults as a part of the Hidden Common Ground initiative, which focuses on agreement and disagreement on solutions to tough public problems. The online poll has a credibility interval, akin to a margin of error, of plus or minus 3.3 percentage points for all respondents.
The data comes after weeks of nationwide protests calling for racial equality and an end to police brutality. In respondent Lallage Carouthers’ 83 years, she has never seen such far-reaching attention on the issues.
An African American woman living in Shelby, North Carolina, she can remember the end of segregation – her daughter’s school integrating and a federal mandate that her nursing unit do the same.
But today, Americans’ reckoning with racial inequality is extending to even historical symbols of slavery and racism, especially Confederate statues. It’s unlike anything Carouthers has seen.
Cases of police brutality that have attracted national attention and protesting don’t happen in isolation – “It’s a problem with the whole system,” she said. Someone had to hire the officers, after all.
About three in four people surveyed say racial bias against Black Americans is a serious problem in the U.S. Slightly fewer say it’s a problem in their community.
Asked whether racism is a problem with individuals or society, respondents were more likely to say both. More than half said major changes or a total redesign were needed.
“Some officers will profile Black people. … I know I can get away with more things as a white person than a Black person could,” Yismo Rosenberg of Houston told USA TODAY. He believes poor training among officers is probably to blame.
The poll found several reforms that focused around training and diversity in policing had support from three-quarters or more of respondents: requiring all officers to undergo training on de-escalation tactics to avoid the use of force, requiring all officers to undergo training on how to be less racially biased and recruiting more Black Americans to become police officers.
Even more popular: transparency reforms. Nine in 10 respondents supported having officers wear body cameras, 8 in 10 supported requiring police departments to publicly report all incidents involving the use of force within 72 hours, and nearly as many supported creating a national public database of officers who have used excessive force – and prohibiting other jurisdictions from rehiring them.
More extreme forms of police reform have varying levels of support, often with partisan divides. But the poll found two major reforms were supported by more than half of poll-takers: focusing policing on serious or violent crimes and requiring all police officers to reapply for their jobs, hiring back and retraining only the most qualified.
The poll identified several specific examples of responsibilities that more than half of respondents thought could be done by other professionals rather than police: sending social workers and EMTs to respond to mental health, substance use and domestic violence issues, assigning social workers and counselors to monitor school safety, and using cameras, drones and other technologies to enforce traffic laws. Democrats were more likely to support these reductions to officers’ responsibilities.
The poll also documented support for police was common, with nearly three-quarters of respondents saying disrespect of police officers was a serious problem and about half saying police budgets should stay the same or increase.
Reducing funding to police departments, a rallying cry for many protesters, received support from about one-third of respondents.