Councilman Curren Price Advocating for Police Reform

 

During the week of June 16, Councilman Curren Price led efforts on ways to reform the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) as he introduced a collection of motions and resolutions, which focused on re-imagining how police interact with the communities they serve.  

June 16

On Tuesday, the City Council approved a motion, which was co-presented by Councilmember Price, that directed the City Administrative Officer and Chief Legislative Analyst, with help from the Mayor, to identify ways to cut $100 to $150 million from the LAPD’s budget for the new fiscal year starting on July 1. The money would be reallocated to underrepresented communities and communities of color within the City of Los Angeles. Read the full motion here

Additionally, Councilman Price co-presented a motion with six other Councilmembers that requests for the development of an unarmed model of crisis response that would divert non-violent calls for service, which includes calls related to mental health, substance abuse, and neighbor disputes, away from the LAPD to the appropriate non-law enforcement agencies. This proposed model is based off of the CAHOOTS program in Eugene, Oregon. Read the full motion here

Further, Councilman Price co-presented a motion instructing the LAPD to report its use of COMPSTAT – a tracking tool that gathers information of crime trends across the City. This motion is significant because there have been critics that claim the use of COMPSTAT promotes biased policing by rewarding officers for meeting enforcement quotas. The motion calls for looking into ways that COMPSTAT can be updated to ensure that it is being used to promote public safety while also ensuring equitable treatment, accountability, transparency, and community trust. Read the full motion here

Additionally, Councilman Price co-introduced a motion that requests information on how the LAPD will handle reports of misconduct by officers at the recent protests that called for justice for George Floyd who was killed by police in Minneapolis at the end of May. There have been numerous reports that many peaceful protesters were injured by tear gas, pepper spray, rubber bullets and other “less lethal” devices. The motion calls for LAPD to explain what disciplinary actions will be used against officers who were found to have used excessive force. Read the full motion here

Councilmember Price along with Councilmembers Herb Wesson and Marqueece Harris-Dawson introduced a motion instructing the LAPD to report on the resources needed to expand the Department’s Mental Evaluation Unit (MEU) and its System wide Mental Assessment Response Teams (SMART) in order to ensure officers can call these units when dealing with individuals with mental health issues. The motion is significant because there have been times where these resources are unavailable to officers in these situations. Read the full motion here

Councilmember Price introduced a resolution in support of AB 1196 (Gipson), which would make it illegal for any law enforcement officer within California to use a Carotid hold when subduing a suspect. This was the method officers used when interacting with George Floyd, who died as a result of this maneuver. Currently, the LAPD bans the use of this method; however it is important for this measure to be in place statewide. Read the full resolution here

June 17

On Wednesday, Councilmember Price introduced two motions related to further reform related to the LAPD. In one motion, Councilmember Price requested for the LAPD, with assistance from the Personnel Department, to report on its efforts to diversify its sworn workforce, especially with respect to African American officers. In addition, the motion requests the LAPD to report on ways to ensure that its recruitment initiatives target local residents, and the feasibility of implementing preferential hiring status for graduates of the Los Angeles Unified School District. Read the full motion here

Councilman Price also introduced a motion that would make it illegal to use the 911 emergency system to file a report, or cause a report to be made to law enforcement agencies, that an “emergency or threat” exists when the call is based on racial bias, and the caller knows that the report is false or frivolous. While it is illegal to make a false 911 report, the current law does not address 911 calls used in a racially motivated way. The motion asks for the City Attorney and the LAPD to report back on options to prevent the reporting of false accusations based on racially-biased complaints. Options include criminal penalties, as well as giving the victims the right to bring private civil actions against the perpetrator. Read the full motion here

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