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August 4, 2020
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US police reform: Trump signs executive order on ‘best practice’

US President Donald Trump shows his signature on an Executive Order on Safe Policing for Safe Communities, in the Rose Garden of the White HouseImage copyright AFP

US President Donald Trump has signed an executive order introducing several police reforms while rejecting calls to defund or dismantle the police.

His order offers federal grants to improve police practices, including creating a database to trace abuses by officers.

The order comes amid anger over the killing of African Americans by police officers.

Several US cities have proposed more radical reforms.

Speaking at the White House on Tuesday, Mr Trump also said he had met with a number of African American families who had lost loved ones.

In his address, the president again defended police while condemning looters and “anarchy”.

“We have to find common ground,” Mr Trump said. “But I strongly oppose the radical and dangerous efforts to defund, dismantle and dissolve our police departments.”

He added that “without police, there’s chaos”.

“Americans believe we must support the brave men and women in blue who police our streets and keep us safe,” Mr Trump said.

“Americans also believe we must improve accountability, increase transparency and invest more resources in police training, recruiting and community engagement.”

The latest drive for reform began after the death in police custody of George Floyd last month.

Image copyright EPA
Image caption There have been Black Lives Matter protests across the US in recent weeks

Floyd died after a white police officer in Minneapolis knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes. The killing spurred global protests led by the Black Lives Matter movement.

There was fresh outrage after the death of another black man, Rayshard Brooks, who was shot during an attempted arrest in Atlanta last Friday.

Media playback is unsupported on your device

Media captionThe Wendy’s drive-through restaurant was set on fire over Mr Brooks’ shooting

What does the Trump order include?

The Trump announcement comes as Democrats and Republicans in the US Congress are developing reforms of their own.

The president’s executive order aims to provide incentives for police departments to improve by tying some federal grants to “best practices”.

It will create a federal database of complaints against officers. It will also encourage the deployment of social workers alongside officers to deal with non-violent cases involving drug addiction and homelessness.

The White House has stressed the idea is to bring the police closer to communities.

The order will also prioritise federal grants to departments that obtain certifications of high standards regarding de-escalation training and use of force.

“As part of this new credentialing process, chokeholds will be banned except if an officer’s life is at risk,” Mr Trump said. “Everybody said it’s time, we have to do it.”

The president also said the government is looking into new “less lethal weapons to prevent deadly interactions”.

Mr Trump has described the Atlanta incident as “very disturbing”, and said his initiative was “about safety”.

The president has also condemned George Floyd’s death, but rejected suggestions of ingrained racism in police forces.

Critics say the measures fall short of the deep reform that many are seeking.

What other reforms have been proposed?

In Minneapolis, some council members have announced plans to defund and dismantle the police department.

In Atlanta, following Rayshard Brooks’s death, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms demanded a series of changes concerning the use of lethal force by police. These include a “duty to intervene” if a police officer sees misconduct by a colleague.

San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York and Chicago are among the cities that have said they would reform their policies on the use of force and root out racist officers.

At federal level, the Democrats have introduced their own legislation into the House of Representatives.

It calls for a ban on the chokeholds method of restraining suspects and on no-knock warrants – which allow police to enter a property without notifying residents.

More on George Floyd’s death

Click Here to Visit Orignal Source of Article https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-53069984

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