Justice in Policing

June 26, 2020

Dear Friend,

Yesterday, I voted to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, a bill to hold police officers accountable, ban chokeholds, end no-knock warrants, reduce police militarization and help root out systemic racism in our nation’s law enforcement agencies.

For the last several weeks, the American people – from all corners of the country and from across the political spectrum – have demanded real change to transform public safety and rethink policing. In the House, my colleagues and I have channeled these demands into the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. Specifically, this bill will:

  • Remove barriers that make it difficult to prosecute police officers for misconduct or recover damages from officers who have violated civilians’ rights;
     
  • Combat police brutality by requiring body and dashboard cameras, banning chokeholds, ending no-knock warrants in drug cases and taking steps to end racial profiling;
     
  • De-militarize the police by limiting the transfer of military weaponry to state and local police departments;
     
  • Improve police transparency by collecting more and better data concerning police misconduct and use of force; and
     
  • Increase pressure on the Justice Department to address systemic racial discrimination by law enforcement.


Unlike the Trump White House and the Republican-led Senate, which only paid lip service to police reform, the legislation we passed in the House yesterday will take meaningful steps toward addressing the culture of racism and violence that exists within our justice system.

The time has come for real change. With my vote yesterday, I am proud to be part of that change, knowing that the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act marks just the beginning of what we must accomplish.
 

Sincerely,

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Congressman John Sarbanes
Maryland’s Third Congressional District