On Sunday, July 19, Massachusetts House leaders released a policing omnibus bill. 

Carol Rose, executive director of the ACLU of Massachusetts, released the following statement in response:

“At this watershed moment in history, the Massachusetts legislature has the opportunity and duty to truly reform policing. We appreciate that House leadership has moved quickly to respond to the moment. The protests, the rallies, and the public cries for real change have been about racial justice and structural reform, to ensure that we never see the death of another Eurie Stamps, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, George Floyd, and countless others who have been victims of police brutality. 

“The House bill includes steps to protect people, such as limiting police use of racially-biased face surveillance technology and proposing a more robust police standards, training, and certification model. The ACLU appreciates that House leadership also acknowledges the need to fix the problem of qualified immunity, although the proposed language in the bill does not remove existing barriers that prevent victims from holding police accountable.

"As the bill moves forward, the ACLU welcomes the opportunity to work with House leadership to ensure that the final House bill offers fundamental change to protect the people who have been victimized by bad policing. Good police officers should have no objection to holding bad police officers accountable. Legislators should stand in solidarity with the people they are elected to serve and who are marching in the streets to demand systemic change.”

More information about the ACLU of Massachusetts’ work on racial justice and policing can be found here.