As New Police Reform Legal guidelines Sweep Throughout the U.S., Some Ask: Are They Sufficient?

Different proposals to cut back police interventions have caught on elsewhere. In February, Berkeley, Calif., barred officers from pulling over motorists for not carrying a seatbelt, misuse of high-beam headlights and expired registrations. The strikes have been partially primarily based on analysis displaying that Black motorists within the metropolis have been about six occasions extra prone to be pulled over than white motorists have been, though the police union raised considerations that the reforms created “important security penalties for residents and officers.”

In Virginia, a legislation went into impact final month limiting the minor visitors violations for which officers ought to cease autos. It additionally prohibits officers from conducting searches solely primarily based on smelling marijuana.

“As a Black girl who understands there’s been a disproportionate abuse of Black and brown individuals by cops, we needed to do one thing to stop these accidents and killings of individuals of shade,” mentioned L. Louise Lucas, a Democratic state senator from Virginia, who proposed the invoice and spoke of her personal mistreatment by legislation enforcement. “That is an age-old story for Black individuals,” she added.

Most of the new guidelines adopted by states and cities have similarities, specializing in using power or accountability after the very fact. Two of the nation’s largest states, California and New York, have been on the forefront of that push — and a few cities have taken extra dramatic steps.

Los Angeles, Oakland and San Francisco, for instance, final 12 months reduce their police division budgets. Activists have referred to as for decreasing police funding and diverting a few of that cash to psychological well being initiatives and social companies. However these calls for have typically met with resistance, not solely from legislation enforcement but additionally from Black residents and officers who concern that crime would surge.

In reality, in Oakland, a few of these cuts have been reversed after a spike in murders and assaults on Asian-Individuals.

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