End Police Secrecy

The police establishment wants to keep misconduct records secret.

New York is the least transparent state in the country when it comes to information about police misconduct. New York Civil Rights Law Section 50-a says that personnel records used to evaluate performance toward continued employment or promotion are confidential. This provision is constantly and increasingly being used to thwart police accountability and transparency statewide.

Message Recipients:

Andrew M. Cuomo (D-NY), Governor
Your State Upper Chamber Representatives
Your State Lower Chamber Representatives
Carl E. Heastie, Speaker,  New York State Assembly
John J. Flanagan, Majority Leader, New York State Senate 

Stop 50-A
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Your Message

When public officials violate the public trust, New Yorkers deserve to know whether or not there’s any accountability. But police departments across the state keep trying to thwart transparency and accountability by hiding officer misconduct behind New York Civil Rights Law Section 50-a.

New York has the most restrictive law in the country when it comes to transparency for police misconduct, and police departments and unions keep trying to make it even worse. Police departments are hiding outcomes of disciplinary trials, citing 50-a as their justification. And a lawsuit in New York City threatens to make all body camera footage secret under 50-a, which would fundamentally undermine the cameras’ entire purpose as tools for transparency.

Police officers are public officials, and the public deserves to know what happens when they engage in misconduct. We shouldn’t have to rely on journalists and whistleblowers to tell us how police departments deal with officers who abuse New Yorkers.

I urge you to put an end to police secrecy by supporting legislation to fully repeal 50-a.

Sincerely,

[First Name] [Last Name]
[Your Address]

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