NAACP makes demands in wake of recent officer-involved killings

NAACP makes demands in wake of recent officer-involved killings

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The Alabama Chapter of the NAACP has drafted a letter to law enforcement agencies in the state, demanding reform within departments.

The list of nearly a dozen demands comes in the wake of the police-involved killings of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and just this weekend – Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta.

The organization is demanding police accountability and an end to systemic racism.

The NAACP released a 10-point plan to law enforcement agencies across the state of Alabama.

The goal?

To dismantle systems that breed implicit biases, racial misconceptions, hatred and inequalities.

“What has happened over the years, law enforcement has developed a culture that when I put the badge on or when I put my uniform on, you as a citizen do what I tell you to do when I tell you to do it and don’t you ask any questions,” said Alabama NAACP President, Benard Simelton.

The demands were initially sent back in 2018 when EJ Bradford was killed Thanksgiving night at the Riverchase Galleria in Hoover, but were sent again following the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd.

“No one has put them in check and so we want to put the police departments in check. We want them to do their job, but we want them to consider alternatives before they fire that weapon,” Simelton said.

The NAACP's recommended plan calls for a citizen’s review board, the implementation of implicit bias training and an increase in transparency in several other ways.

Jefferson County Sheriff, Mark Pettway, said the demands are reasonable, and has already started implementing some of them.

“We want to make sure that going forward, we have a good understanding of what’s needed both ways: what’s needed in the community and what’s needed by law enforcement,” Sheriff Pettway said.

Simelton said he and other members of the NAACP plan to meet with the heads of law enforcement agencies to come up with a plan to get departments to implement at least some of the demands, if not all of them.

Copyright 2020 WBRC. All rights reserved.