Reforms Needed to Stop Police Brutality in the US

It appears the US has lost the plot as police brutality hit new highs. Every week, a new case of police brutality is reported and there does not seem to be any end to what seems like a power struggle between the public and the police. 

The general populace is calling for reform and new policies to be implemented to curb the injustice and excessive force that is executed on suspected perpetrators.

Building trust

The bridge between the minority civilian and the police has been growing wider apart and the only way to rebuild that bridge is to stand accountable for actions – not only of past events but in every situation where police brutality is reported. Too many assumptions are being made about minority groups and how minority groups view the police. 

To restore trust, the police must meet with the minority groups and hear their grievances. This should not be a time to justify past wrongs but to find ways to move forward. In the same way, however, the minority groups need to acknowledge that there are two sides to a coin and work with the police to bring known felons to justice.

Unbiased training

Police brutality lawyers have their hands full not because police officers are inherently racist but rather because of a subconscious bias against minority groups. Past social inequalities have rendered many black neighborhoods to slums and as a result, there is more crime reported in these areas. 

Over time, a police officer can grow to become biased only because of the frequency of crime in these areas. To circumvent this issue, police should go for continual training to react to situations rather than skin color. 

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Assessing situations

As it currently stands, the police are trained to act on instinct when caught up in difficult situations. These instincts often save their lives, but when they put themselves in difficult situations, they can cause tension and danger that could have been avoided if they had approached the situation from a different perspective. 

The way police approach potential hostile situations needs to be addressed to try and minimize the tension between the suspect and the police. More emphasis should be placed on support and how police approach and execute arrests. 

Transparent accountability

There are too many police brutality cases that get swept under the rug and very little transparency when it comes to the disciplinary processes involved when police misconduct was discovered. The laws are written in such a way that a police officer has more rights to violence than a civilian. 

This leads to a much lower conviction rate against police who have used excessive force. For police to be held accountable for their actions, the laws that govern their actions should be brought down and resemble the laws of the general public. 

Higher standards

The police are there to serve and protect, not pillage and endanger. However, the bar for becoming a police officer is not set very high. This leads to people becoming police officers who do not have the right psychological resolve to handle the pressures of the job. 

The right people for the job will not necessarily do the job because police officers do not get paid well, compared to other high-risk vocations. If the police are paid better, the standards can also be raised.