Police Reform

How to Fight for Criminal Justice Reform

Stan
Published June 3, 2020
It's easy to get overwhelmed with the responsibility of creating change.  People of Color and their allies are working hard to make the most of this moment and contribute to this movement. In the struggle for criminal justice reform and the end of police brutality, we need to take action that moves us forward.  

What can you do?

Identify your elected officials


Use the Ballot Ready app to see who is on the ballot for the next election. These elected officials can immediately push our movement forward.  

 We target: 
  • Mayors: They appoint police chiefs that set conduct standards for city police departments.
  • Prosecutors / District Attorneys: Prosecutors hold tremendous power in our criminal justice system.  The choose which cases to try. They offer plea bargains.  They investigate bad cops.  We win if we can get progressive prosecutors elected.

Understand Their Platform
Officials at the state, county, and local levels are considered - "down-ballot" candidates.  These candidates often get elected based on popularity, not issues.  Once you've identified your local officials, do a Google search, find their official website, and look for their issues.  

Look for any issues that address criminal justice or police reform.  That's where we will start.

Demand Change


We need three critical reforms:

We demand that mayors implement:

1. Universal Body Cam Usage: The awakening of white America to the brutal reality of being black in America began when George Floyd was murdered on camera.  His death shook white people's moral consciousness and they took action. While having the recording was helpful, Mr. Floyd would still be alive if the cop knew that his homicidal actions would be recorded and available instantaneously to his superiors and the public he served.  We have the technology to provide universal transparency for all actions taken by the citizens we've entrusted with justice and keeping the peace.  We cannot restore trust in law enforcement without employing these tools.

2. Good Officer Certification: Police officers should be certified annually for compliance with Just Enforcement standards. This certification would be immediately and permanently terminated upon a verified excessive force incident.  Certification is required for employment in any county within the state.

3. Chokehold Ban: Police departments began banning the use of chokeholds in the 1990s due to the high incidents of death associated with the restraint.  The death of George Floyd shows that the practice has not been universally banned. 

We demand that prosecutors/district attorneys implement:

1. End Money Bail: Prosecutors should drastically curtail the use of money bails for poor defendants.

2. Keep Kids Out of Adult Jails: Stop creating adult criminals by putting kids in adult jails.

3. Stop Unnecessary Prosecutions: Petty crime prosecutions disproportionately hurt PoC

4. Prosecute Bad Cops: Stop the corrupt conflict of interest between cops and prosecutors. Commit to prosecuting bad behavior.

5. Transparency: Commit to reporting key metrics to the public including Plea bargains offered/taken, Crimes persecuted by time, Recommended sentences categorized by charges.

6. Stop Anti-Immigrant Prosecutions: Prosecutors should not use immigrants to pad their conviction and arrest stats.

Read more about our six demands here

Keep Up The Pressure

The most persistent wins in our struggle.  Be prepared for a long battle.  We win when we keep up the pressure day-in and day-out.  Our opposition is betting that you will run out of motivation or get distracted. Prove them wrong.
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