Public safety is primarily a local law enforcement issue, but the federal government does have an important funding role to play. We need to make sure law enforcement agencies aren’t overburdened and instead expand funding for intervention services so that law enforcement can focus on imminent threats to the public. We need to increase funding for counseling, mental health, addiction, and homelessness services so police only need to focus on imminent threats to the public. We also need to reinvest in our police training too. This money should come from the federal government to support overstretched municipal budgets.
Along with increasing funding for our public safety programs, we must also increase accountability. Congress should act immediately to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. This bill would ban chokeholds, carotid holds, and “no-knock” search warrants, create a national database of police misconduct, and end qualified immunity. These are all very important steps in reforming how we handle policing in this country.
Another less discussed and very important aspect of this legislation is the ending of the militarization of our police forces that occurred through President Bush’s administration pushing out equipment returned directly from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to local law enforcement.
Read my full plan: HERE