NYPD Inspector General Philip Eure started work last week, and to welcome him to the job, Communities United for Police Reform compiled a list of police problems that need fixing. The grievances are sadly predictable: lack of transparency, surveillance of Muslims, excessive force, use of condoms as evidence in sex work cases.
The organzation also points to the racial disparity in pot possession arrests, which, as ever, is quite large. According to the report, when 2014 is up, cops will have made 28,000 such arrests, with 85 percent made up of black and Latino people.
The Village Voice spoke with Monifa Bandele, a representative of Communities United for Police Reform:
“Whether it is the persistence of discriminatory arrests of Black and Brown New Yorkers for possession of small amounts of marijuana – in part caused by unlawful searches – or the continued attempts to broadly surveil Muslims communities, there are a range of policing policies and practices that continue to be harmful to communities throughout our city and counterproductive to public safety,” Monifa Bandele of Communities United for Police Reform, said via email. “After years of absent and lackluster public accountability for the NYPD, we expect IG Eure will provide comprehensive and independent oversight that investigates and addresses these issues in order to help ensure that the department uses effective policies and practices that keep New Yorkers safe while respecting their civil rights and the law.”