Bustos Statement on Justice in Policing Act of 2020

MOLINE – Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos co-sponsored the Justice in Policing Act of 2020, introduced this morning by Congressional Black Caucus Chair Karen Bass, U.S. House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler, and Senators Kamala Harris and Cory Booker. The legislation proposes a number of reforms to law enforcement practices with an aim to offer wide-ranging solutions to increase police accountability and to build trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve.

“Today, I stand with those calling for equal justice. Our nation has witnessed how police brutality has harmed Black communities – it is every person’s responsibility to work toward change. This morning, my colleagues in the House and Senate proposed the Justice in Policing Act, a comprehensive approach to shifting law enforcement practices to better protect all Americans, and I am proud to join them as a co-sponsor. We must be united in our resolve to eliminate systemic racism in all of its forms,” Congresswoman Bustos said.

The Justice in Policing Act of 2020 would:

  • remove the barriers to prosecuting police misconduct and recovering damages from officers who have violated civilians’ rights and end qualified immunity for law enforcement;
  • de-militarize police by limiting the transfer of military weaponry to state and local police departments;
  • combat police brutality, including by requiring body and dashboard cameras, banning chokeholds and enacting steps to end racial profiling;
  • stepping up pressure on the Justice Department to address systemic racial discrimination by law enforcement;
  • and finally making lynching a federal hate crime, as the House did in passing H.R. 35 earlier this year.

Additional legislation that Congresswoman Bustos has co-sponsored include:

  • H.Res. 988, Condemning all acts of police brutality, racial profiling, and the use of excessive and militarized force throughout the country, which condemns police brutality and calls for renewed efforts to prevent police brutality moving forward.
  • H.R. 1636, the Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys Act, which would establish the Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys Act. The Commission would recognize unique hardships and injustices in this country that must be addressed and make proposals to alleviate those hardships.
  • H.R. 4408, the Eric Garner Excessive Use of Force Prevention Act, which would make the deployment of chokeholds by law enforcement officers unlawful under federal criminal statute.