In the wake of a number of killings of unarmed black men around the country, local organizations galvanized around policing reform efforts have proposed the “Right to Know” act. If enacted as legislation, the bill would have required police officer to provide more information about people’s rights and obtain proof of consent before searching them, and mandated that officers fully identify themselves to the people they stop.
But earlier this year, Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito agreed with then-Commissioner Bill Bratton of the NYPD to allow the police department to use internal rules, rather than legislation, to address the issue. That despite a majority of councilmembers supporting the bill.
Advocates aren’t satisfied. Some councilmembers are contemplating action to circumvent the speaker. And Mark-Viverito herself is calling for a wait-and-see approach.
The video below from our friends at BRIC-TV lays out the contours of a debate that could shape the discussion around law-enforcement during next year’s municipal elections.
Last month, I moderated a discussion on BRIC’s live daily newscast about the police reofrm debate: