MASSACHUETTS MUNICIPAL POLICE COALITION
STATEMENT REGARDING “POLICE REFROM” BILL S2800
The Massachusetts Municipal Police Coalition (MMPC), representing 25 police unions and 2500 police officer members, writes in strong opposition to so-called “police reform” measures presently pending before the House of Representatives.
Those measures include drastic changes to public safety practices that have been keeping communities and neighborhoods safe, without discriminating on the basis of race. While we were all taken aback at the events and video footage of incidents from around the country, we do believe that these types of drastic measures as proposed in the Senate bill are not the solution.
The MMPC, working with the Massachusetts Law Enforcement Policy Group (MLEPG) has engaged in productive dialogue and has reached a consensus on the elimination of chokeholds, standardized training of procedures and protocols, the creation of an independent body consisting of both non law enforcement and law enforcement to enact, enforce, and oversee law enforcement legislation, including the accreditation and certification of all law enforcement officials; and the promotion of diversity in policing.
There has been insufficient research, study, detailed testimony, and deliberation on matters of great importance to public safety and its relationship to racial equality in Massachusetts from which an informed and intelligent decision can be made. Do not rush or be pushed into reckless legislating.
The inevitable consequences of the radical changes as proposed would include the immediate retirement of a broad wave of police officers across the state and a severe drop in the number of qualified candidates who wish to become police officers. You will have made a position vital to the public safety in Massachusetts one that nobody worth having will choose.
The MMPC urges the House to allow the citizens of the Commonwealth to speak and be heard on this important piece of legislation. The MMPC agrees with calls for greater police accountability and enhanced training. The MMPC and our partners in Law Enforcement Labor want to work with all interested parties to make policing in Massachusetts the best in this country. Our elected officials owe that to the people of the Commonwealth and those who protect and serve.