The CBA has established the Policing Task Force to convene community and law enforcement leaders in an earnest and frank dialogue about where we find ourselves in 2020. The Task Force will facilitate conversations with a diverse group of community leaders, law enforcement officials, and attorneys to hear the concerns raised by community members and to consider potential solutions in order to recommend reforms to policies, procedures, training, and culture in police departments. The goal is to ensure that our police departments have the policies and practices that best support fairness, procedural justice, transparency, and accountability.
“Justice, integrity, and accountability are hallmarks of a democracy and the armor protecting the rule of law,” said Ndidi N. Moses, president of the Connecticut Bar Association. “Following the untimely and horrific death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who was in police custody, the Connecticut Bar Association felt compelled to convene this Task Force to begin a dialogue between the community and law enforcement on effective policing strategies to restore trust and faith in the justice system and those who have sworn an oath to protect our communities and the rule of law.”
The Task Force is chaired by Deirdre M. Daly, former United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut and a partner at Finn Dixon & Herling LLC, Reverend Keith A. King, pastor at Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church and an attorney, and Alexis Smith, executive director of New Haven Legal Assistance Association, and includes representatives from the ACLU, NAACP, affinity bar associations, state and federal law enforcement leaders, including four police chiefs, and other respected individuals and community activists from throughout the state.
Co-Chairs Daly and Smith provided the following quote: “At a time of tremendous unrest in our country, this Task Force aims to address trust between police and the communities they serve by identifying best policing practices. We are grateful for the engagement of the many community and law enforcement leaders who have joined the Task Force, thereby committing themselves to collaborative reform within our state. Working together, we believe that we can create meaningful change to help ensure that policing protects and serves all members of the public, including the police themselves.”
The Task Force will focus on:
- Facilitating conversations between the community and law enforcement regarding excessive force, police misconduct, and systemic discrimination.
- Examining the hiring, disciplinary, and firing practices of police departments; the reporting and review of incidents of misconduct; and the role of the community in the review of police misconduct and the recruitment of police officers.
- Reviewing police department’s training, policies, and practices relating to use of force, de-escalation, and officer wellness.
- Making recommendations to improve accountability and transparency.
For more information on the Task Force and to read the CBA’s statement denouncing hate and death of Georg Floyd, visit ctbar.org/policing-task-force.
This news item was updated to include the addition of the third co-chair, Rev. Keith A. King.