For Immediate Release
ColorOfChange.Org Submits Thousands of Comments to Police Task Force and Asks President to Take Definitive Action in Letter
Civil Rights Group Calls on Presidential Task Force on Policing to Advance Concrete Changes to End Nationwide Crisis of Discriminatory Policing
WASHINGTON - The largest online civil rights group in the country has sent a letter to the President’s Task Force on Policing in the 21st Century calling on President Obama to take definitive action to end the nationwide crisis of police brutality. The letter included more than 8,000 ColorOfChange members’ comments and referenced more than 1 million signatures calling for systemic change to violent and discriminatory policing nationwide, as well as the federal prosecutions of Darren Wilson and Officer Daniel Pantaleo for the killings of Mike Brown and Eric Garner, respectively.
“We are proud to deliver the comments of more than 8,000 ColorOfChange members, representing millions of other members and their allies nationwide who are calling for major advances in police oversight and accountability in the coming year. The President’s task force is an important step in the right direction and we are hopeful that it will offer concrete changes to keep our communities safe. But commissions are only as valuable as the change they bring about. Last week, a ColorOfChange member received a solicitation from the White House to submit feedback on priorities for the new year and policing wasn’t even on the survey. We call on President Obama and Attorney General Holder to treat this matter with the utmost seriousness and immediately move forward concrete reforms that proportional to the scale of today’s crisis.”
Comments may be found here: http://goo.gl/4UQpUJ
The full text of the letter can be found here: http://goo.gl/TM3rhh
In the letter the organization offers a vision for policing in America and concrete reforms for the federal government to implement immediately:
- A fully-resourced and rigorous civil rights and criminal investigation by the DOJ into discriminatory policing, excessive force, and death or injury by police in every state in the country;
- A comprehensive, streamlined, public national-level database of police shootings, excessive force, misconduct complaints, traffic and pedestrian stops, and arrests, broken down by race and other demographic data, with key privacy protections, the exclusion of personally identifying factors and information, and deportation immunity for civilians.
- Mandating of Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission (POST) in every state and inter-state coordination between all POSTs.
- An executive order that creates a strong and enforceable prohibition on police brutality and discriminatory policing based on race, ethnicity, religion, national origin, age, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, immigration status, disability, and housing status.
- Increased funding for the DOJ's Office for Civil Rights to ensure additional, accessible state-level responders for police and other civil rights violations Divestment of federal anti-drug grants and federal funding for police departments that demonstrate abuse of power and massive reinvestment in community controlled and based policing practices.
- Support for the passage of the End Racial Profiling Act. (ERPA)
- Streamlined national use of force matrix and mandating that state and local police have clear and streamlined matrices.
- Strict limits on asset seizure without due process and the transfer of any military equipment to local law enforcement under the 1033 program, guidelines that ensure that the equipment is not used on non-violent protesters, and an end to the requirement that such military weaponry is used within a year.
With more than 850,000 members, ColorOfChange.org is the nation’s largest online civil rights organization.