New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has officially repealed the ’50-A of New York’s Civil Rights Law’, hereby granting public access to records of police complaints and disciplinary action. The decision comes as protests continue to rage across the state and country, calling for police reform and justice for victims of racially incited police brutality.
“Enough is enough,” Cuomo stated before signing the law.
New York has abolished legislation which kept records of police misconduct secret. Citizens will now have free access to the documentation of disciplinary action and public complaints held by the state police force.
“Police reform is long overdue, and Mr. Floyd’s murder is just the most recent murder,” Governor Cuomo reportedly stated before removing the law. “It’s about being here before, many, many times. It’s about a long list that’s been all across this country that always makes the same point: injustice against minorities in America by the criminal justice system.”
Efforts to overturn this particular legislation are nothing new to New York state. Following the 2014 murder of Eric Garner at the hands of a police officer, both the victim’s family and the public called for records of past violence to be made public. The officer in question had eight prior misconduct complaints made against him.
However, the state had ruled these documents to be “confidential and not subject to inspection or review without the express written consent of a relevant official.”
“The silver lining on this incredibly dark cloud is that the sun is finally starting to shine on injustice,” Senator Jamaal Bailey stated to press. “Maybe it’s the unmistakable, and in my opinion disputable, video evidence that we saw a live murder on TV, but it’s done something to the consciousness of America.”
This change is hopefully one of the first in a long line of reforms to the way law enforcement operates globally. In related news, Minneapolis has recently announced their plans to disband the city’s police force following the murder of George Floyd.