The California National Party is horrified at the ongoing specter of violence against citizens by police within the United States, as well as the recent shooting of officers in Dallas. The time for platitudes has passed, we need real solutions. Therefore, we propose the following reforms which can be immediately enacted within California and replicated elsewhere to help re-establish trust between our communities and the officers who serve and protect them.
- Mandatory body cameras for all officers. This must be backed up with clear policies that dictate cameras must be on and functioning at all times and that interfering with recording is not acceptable and will be treated as evidence of intent.
- All body camera footage and other video and audio evidence is public property and must be available to the public in the event of complaints around use of force. This footage will also protect officers who have been accused of excessive force who have used appropriate force.
- Guaranteed public access to the findings of all investigations into officer misconduct.
- Mandatory collection of demographic data for all police interactions and public access to all of that data.
- Mandatory training for all police on nonviolent de-escalation tactics, as used elsewhere in the world, so that officers who feel threatened have the tools they need to de-escalate dangerous situations without resorting to use of force.
- Criminal prosecution of officers who engage in violence against civilians who are already subdued and/or pose no credible threat to the officer’s safety.
- Automatic investigation by the California Attorney General any time a civilian dies or sustains serious injury while in custody.
- Demilitarize our police departments by ending the federal government’s practice of giving or selling military hardware to police departments.
- Major investment into community policing programs which have been repeatedly proven effective. Community policing should be the default model.
- End California’s usage of for-profit prisons that provide a financial incentive for incarceration
Police officers rely on the trust and good will of citizens to do their job and every incident of this kind makes it harder for the vast majority of officers who do a very difficult and dangerous job. These proposals are therefore in the best interest of officers and community members both. Further, they are broadly supported by public opinion within California and most of them can be implemented by simple policy changes.
California National Party believes that we need to introduce fact based policy with real solutions to solve these difficult and emotionally charged problems. We cannot wait any longer for the United States to fall into infighting while Washington sits in gridlock and apathy. California leads the nation on many issues and adopting these solutions will not only serve our own communities but provide a positive example for the rest of the United States.
We will continue to evaluate proposals and update this document over time.
CNP official statement on Police Reform (Pdf version to be printed and distributed)