MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Community groups who had been collaborating with Nassau Police on reforms split and are going their own way, saying their plans of what’s needed are honest and fair.
As CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan reports, the executive order came down from Albany last May after the death of George Floyd.READ MORE: Pressure Builds On President Biden's Administration To Loosen International Travel Ban Into The Country
“I don’t want some knee on my neck,” one woman said.
Every community in New York is to evaluate police practices on use of force, crowd management, citizen complaints or risk the loss of state funds.
“Doing policing like they did in the 19th and 20th century, and that’s not acceptable,” said civil rights attorney Fred Brewington.
Brewington, leading grassroots community groups released their own proposal apart from Nassau Police. It’s called “The People’s Plan,” and details reforms from the bottom up, not the top down.
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“This is really groundbreaking for us. Absolutely critical,” said Elaine Gross of Erase Racism. “You don’t look, you aren’t going to find structural racism.”
The People’s Plan shows an arrest disparity among minorities 5.3 to 1. Their plan includes reforms for handling mental health crises, civilian and internal complaints, traffic stops and search warrants.
“Me, as a person that has actually been assaulted by a police officer before,” said Long Beach resident James Hodge.READ MORE: Authorities Announce Major Gang Crackdown In Queens, With 28 Arrests
“I think our local police departments are the best trained in the world,” said Carle Place resident Glenn Connors.
The order requires each police department to show proof they’ve modernized their policies and submit their plans by April 1.
The county submitted its own reform draft.
“More diverse recruitment, body cameras, giving people an avenue to make complaints,” said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran.
A legislative hearing will be held Wednesday in Mineola.
“We want to make sure we do it right, in all fairness to the residents as well as our police officers,” said Nassau County Legislature Public Safety Chair Denise Ford.
“Let’s admit that we have a problem and then lets solve it,” Brewington said.MORE NEWS: Anxiety Grows On Long Island As COVID-19 Cases Increase
With hopes the police reform plans will align.