The most important racial justice and civil rights bill before the California legislature is facing a major hurdle in the Assembly Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, July 6th. It is important for Committee Members to hear from constituents and recognize how important this legislation is to the public. Please see below for information on how to contact Assembly members on the committee, and urge them to vote YES on SB 2.
CA Senate Bill (SB) 2.
What is SB 2?
The National Police Accountability Project is proud to support our members' work in spearheading California Senate Bill 2, authored by California Senator Bradford (D-Los Angeles), and co-authored by Senate President pro Tempore Toni Atkins (D-San Diego).
Existing law allows violence-prone officers to create an unsafe culture for the citizens they are sworn to protect, by providing immunities from the consequences of violating someone’s civil rights. Law enforcement officers in California currently enjoy unprecedented immunity from the consequences of violating someone’s civil rights with excessive force.
Kenneth Ross Jr., an unarmed Black man, was killed in broad daylight – gunned down in Gardena by an officer wielding an automatic rifle. Years later, Kenneth’s family has been unable to bring that officer to justice because court-created immunities in California and qualified immunity at the federal level have made it nearly impossible to hold rogue officers accountable for using excessive force.
Kenneth Ross Jr.’s story isn’t unique. State legislators in California can act right now to eliminate those immunities for police officers, and provide a pathway for the victims of excessive force or brutality to hold rogue officers accountable.
Senate Bill (SB) 2 also aims to implement a statewide system for revoking the license of police officers who commit serious misconduct, preventing bad cops who leave one law enforcement agency from being employed by any other police agency. This statewide decertification process means that cops who have been fired, or resigned while under investigation for misconduct, can no longer bounce around from community to community. It also means officers who were fired for excessive force, sexual misconduct, and dishonesty will no longer continue to terrorize community members by finding a job somewhere else.
How can you support this legislation?
It's pivotal that senators hear from constituents, concerned individuals, organizations, and other community groups before the next vote on SB2. Please see below for different options for contacting senators and ensuring that SB2 makes it through the legislature and becomes law.
If you are a member of, or otherwise associated with, an organization (community groups, student groups, faith organizations, bar associations, etc) that would be interested in submitting a letter in support of SB2, please contact NPAP's Legal Director, Lauren Bonds, at firstname.lastname@example.org. She can assist your group in drafting and submitting a letter.
As a California resident, your voice is critical to the final decision of these legislators. While it feels like a small action, we regularly hear from legislators after the fact about the significance of having their inboxes or voicemails filled by constituents in advance of a vote.
In addition, please see below for a document containing talking points and call and email scripts: