NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – With the blessing of Speaker Christine Quinn, a pair of bills designed to reform the NYPD are headed to a vote in the City Council this month.
One of the bills would create an inspector general for the police department.
The bills have been written with a scalpel, Brooklyn Councilman Jumaane Williams told WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman.
“Taking advice, even from the PBA, so that we don’t harm individual officers,” Williams said, noting that the IG would be a policy review office. “Which makes it one of the best kinds of oversight and officers shouldn’t be afraid because the IG will not be able to direct them.”
Opposition to an inspector general has been greatly exaggerated, Councilman Brad Lander said.
“Every big city police department around the country other than the NYPD has an inspector general or some comparable form,” Lander said.
The the other measure makes it easier to sue the NYPD with a claim of bias based profiling, such as in a stop-and-frisk incident.
Lander said the bill will “make sure that we are not policing by profiling our neighbors.”
“It is difficult to hear from people who are not dealing with the young people who feel frustrated to be stopped every single day trying to go to work, trying to go to school,” Williams said.
They’ll force a vote by the end of the month using a procedure never been done before to get around the opposition of the Public Safety Committee chair – Peter Vallone, Jr.
“No one here is playing politics,” Lander said.
Quinn is backing this move despite her opposition to the lawsuit bill.
“We believe, very deeply, that we can keep all New Yorkers safe, in fact, that we can improve public safety,” Lander said.
Backers say the initiatives would provide needed oversight and protect people against racially biased stops. Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other opponents say the measures would hamstring policing.
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