President Donald Trump did not commit to significant police reform Thursday as the United States faces its biggest reckoning in decades over brutality and racism in law enforcement. At a roundtable event in Dallas, Trump said he is finalizing an executive order to “encourage police departments nationwide to meet the most current professional standards of force” and de-escalation.
Repeated police killings of black Americans have sparked the widest push for law enforcement reform in years.
The nationwide movement fueled by George Floyd’s death last month has already kick-started change in cities and states. The coming months will help to determine just how far officials go in reshaping departments — and whether Congress will join state and local lawmakers in taking steps to overhaul policing.
Policymakers across the country have targeted several major areas in their reform discussions, including:
Ensuring more transparency about police use of force and disciplinary records
Making it easier to sue or prosecute officers who commit abuses
Activists and some Democratic officials want to reimagine the system to root out structural racism, calling to redirect chunks of police funding to social services or even replace whole departments with a new public safety system.
As municipalities start to respond to sustained demonstrations against police brutality — including violence against protesters — significant reform at the national level is far from assured. Democrats and Republicans who want to make policing changes will have to contend with a president often reluctant to criticize officers or excessive use of force.
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dards of force” and de-escalation.