Police Reform Campaign Responds to NYPD Body Camera Announcement

In response to Mayor de Blasio and the NYPD announcing a sped-up expansion of the use of body-worn cameras to all officers, Communities United for Police Reform released the following statement from spokesperson Mark Winston Griffith, executive director of Brooklyn Movement Center.

"Body-worn cameras (BWCs) don’t equate to police accountability and transparency on their own, and the mayor and NYPD are too eagerly seeking to claim they do to compensate for their poor record on police accountability and transparency. Studies have shown that BWCs have not delivered those results, and the NYPD’s policies on the cameras, lack of discipline for police misconduct, and refusing to release basic information about the status of police brutality cases undermine any stated goals related to police accountability and transparency. The NYPD’s policy on public access to the footage is regressive and gives the NYPD unilateral and unchecked control over the captured footage and its release, while the rules on when officers must turn cameras on are equally bad. This makes it nearly impossible that New Yorkers subject to police brutality caught on these cameras – if captured at all – will be able to access their own footage in a reasonably convenient way. Nonetheless, capturing police brutality on camera also means nothing if the NYPD refuses to hold its officers accountable in a timely and meaningful way, as continues to be true with the officers who killed Eric Garner and others who have brutalized countless other New Yorkers. The court-ordered pilot program that initiated the NYPD’s use of body cameras hasn’t even been completed, and an expansion before the plaintiffs and court can make a thoughtful assessment is premature.”


About Communities United for Police Reform

Communities United for Police Reform (CPR) is an unprecedented campaign to end discriminatory policing practices in New York, and to build a lasting movement that promotes public safety and policing practices based on cooperation and respect– not discriminatory targeting and harassment.

CPR brings together a movement of community members, lawyers, researchers and activists to work for change. The partners in this campaign come from all 5 boroughs, from all walks of life and represent many of those unfairly targeted the most by the NYPD. CPR is fighting for reforms that will promote community safety while ensuring that the NYPD protects and serves all New Yorkers.

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