The televised murder of George Floyd, the protestors, and the conviction of formal police officer Derek Chauvin has brought exposure to a larger problem when policing communities of color. Now we have the police killing of 20-year-old Daunte Wright, 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant and 13-year-old Adam Toledo to add to a long list of victims.
Of course these cases have unique and individualized circumstances, and investigations are currently being conducted, but the systemic problem when policing black and brown communities continues.
H.R.1280, 117th Congress (2021-2022) George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021 has passed the United States House of Representatives. According to the Congress.gov website:
“the bill enhances existing enforcement mechanisms to remedy violations by law enforcement. Among other things, it does the following:
- lowers the criminal intent standard—from willful to knowing or reckless—to convict a law enforcement officer for misconduct in a federal prosecution,
- limits qualified immunity as a defense to liability in a private civil action against a law enforcement officer, and
- grants administrative subpoena power to the Department of Justice (DOJ) in pattern-or practice investigations.”
This bill also provides a whole host of remedies to ensure communities of color receive equitable, fair and just treatment whenever this is police engagement. This essential and critical bill is currently in the United States Senate. To protect communities of color and children like Adam Toledo and Ma’Khia Bryant, this bill needs to be passed into law. It is up tous to contact our lawmakers to advocate for fair and equitable treatment whenever police officers are engaged with adults and children of color. Collectively, we can work together and with our local police departments to ensure all communities are safe.
Contact your lawmakers today and tell them the H.R.1280-George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021 needs to be passed into law. Click here to visit commoncause.org to find your representatives and their contact information.
Rev. Beverly Dukes, Policy Coordinator
United Voices for Children
 “H.R. 1280-George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021,” Congress Government, accessed 4/23/2021, https://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/house-bill/1280.