NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYPD officials discussed Thursday a retraining of officers in the wake of the Eric Garner death in police custody.
“The relationship between police and community has to change,” de Blasio told reporters. “The way we go about policing has to change. Has to change in this city, has to change in this country. I am fundamentally convinced it will change.
“Through all the pain and the frustration, I will keep saying what I know to be true: Reform is happening here in New York City. It is happening already before our very eyes, tanigably, meaningfully, and it has only just begun. There is much more ahead.”
About 22,000 patrolmen are being retrained during a three-day course, Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said. The retraining began earlier this month, and officials hope it will be completed by June.
“It’s a fulfillment of a commitment that I made coming in as commissioner and that the mayor embraced wholeheartedly — the need to refocus the department,” Bratton said. “And to refocus it requires training and the enhancement of skills that are so necessary to reach the commitment that we made to the community to police fairly, impartially and safely.”
Officials said some of the focal points will be changing how officers both talk and listen to people, slowing down some interactions and waiting until backup arrives in certain cases.