As protests against police brutality have spread across the nation, President Donald Trump responded by signing an executive order regarding the topic. Continue reading below to learn more about what this entails.
What Does the Executive Order Say?
In signing the executive order, President Trump is providing options and incentives to local police departments throughout the country for providing reform. The order states federal incentives would be created through the Justice Department for local departments that seek “independent credentialing.” This would certify that these departments are meeting higher standards for both the use of force and de-escalation training. If implemented, the standards would also ban using chokeholds in all circumstances except for when “an officer’s life is at risk.”
In addition to this, the order incentivizes local police departments across the country to use various experts as “co-responders” that assist officers in “complex encounters.” This can include those in mental health, addiction, and homelessness fields. The system recommended in the order would encourage a better sharing of information between departments to track officers who have a record of abuse so that they cannot move to other departments after an incident. The order also directs the Justice Department to create and maintain a database that tracks officers who were terminated or decertified, criminally convicted for on-duty conduct, or faced civil judgments due to improper use of force. The order emphasizes that the database would only track cases in which an officer was afforded fair process.
What Else Should I Know?
While the order addressed different aspects of police reform, it did not discuss the matter of qualified immunity. This shields police officers from being found liable in certain circumstances. In addition to this, it is important to note that decisions that are made about law enforcement and departments are usually made at the state and local level, not federally. It is because of this that the executive order signed by the President does not require departments in the country to follow these rules. Instead, it serves incentives to the departments to implement the reforms.
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