CLARKE VOTES TO PASS BOLD POLICE REFORM LEGISLATION H.R.1280, THE GEORGE FLOYD JUSTICE IN POLICING ACT
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Yvette D. Clarke voted to pass H.R. 1280, the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. This bold, transformative legislation will reimagine the culture of policing in America with unprecedented reforms to curb police brutality, end racial profiling, eliminate qualified immunity for law enforcement, and build greater trust between law enforcement and our communities.
“The murder of George Floyd was not just an inflection point, it was a tipping point. It brought into focus a truth about policing and our broken legal system: Black and Brown Americans have endured generations of state sanctioned systemic racism, racial profiling and police brutality. As New Yorkers, we are all too familiar with this most fundamental and painful truth, we have all witnessed how our country has turned a blind eye to law enforcement officers who have intimidated, abused, tortured, and killed unarmed Black and Brown people. The global, multi-racial, multi-ethnic and inter-generational outrage coupled with the activism of the Black Lives Matter movement has moved us all to action in the wake of the killing of George Floyd,” said Clarke. “Last summer, George Floyd, an unarmed Black man, begged for his life. His final words were ‘I can’t breathe’. Despite his desperation, Derek Chauvin stared at us with his hand in his pocket and his knee cutting off George Floyd airways, believed that he could get away with this evil deed and there was no price to be paid for taking a black man’s life, that he would face neither criminal penalty nor civil liability. This brazen act,, changed the course of history in our nation. H.R. 1280, The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, holds our legal system and police accountable at a time when transparency and liability are lacking. We’ve witnessed far too many deaths at the hands of law enforcement with little to no recourse. This bill must pass, we can not abide the murder of Black lives any longer. Full stop.”
The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act will take numerous key steps to achieve transformative, structural change to combat the pattern of police brutality and racial injustice, including:
- Banning all chokeholds;
- Banning no-knock warrants in drug cases;
- Ending racial, religious, and discriminatory profiling;
- Eliminating the qualified immunity doctrine that is a barrier to holding police officers accountable for wrongful conduct;
- Establishing a National Police Misconduct Registry to improve transparency and prevent problematic officers who are fired or leave one agency from moving to another jurisdiction without any accountability;
- Requiring data collection, including mandatory body cameras and dashboard cameras;
- Establishing new standards for policing and Public Safety Innovation grants for community-based organizations to help reimagine policing in their communities;
- Making lynching a federal hate crime; and more.
“George Floyd, Sandra Bland, Rayshard Brooks, Daniel Prude, Atatianna Jefferson, Freddie Gray, Eric Garner, Stephon Clark, Botham Jean, Philando Castille, Alton Sterling, Andre Hill, Casey Goodson, Jr., Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, and Breonna Taylor. We speak your names to honor this action. Your lives, like so many other Black and Brown people who proceeded you mattered. Black Lives still and always will, matter,” said Clarke. “I remain committed to taking action that will eradicate racially motivated police brutality and the extrajudicial execution of Black and Brown people. I will not stop until the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act becomes law.”
Yvette D. Clarke has been in Congress since 2007. She represents New York’s Ninth Congressional District, which includes Central and South Brooklyn. Clarke is Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus Taskforce on Immigration, a Senior Member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and a Senior Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security.