After the protests and riots sparked by the death of unarmed teen Michael Brown at the hands of police officer Darren Wilson, President Obama is laying out a plan to help improve the relationship between law enforcement and the communities that it’s supposed to protect.
Following his meeting with elected officials and law enforcement, as well as civil rights leaders, Obama spoke to the public about his efforts to ensure that there is a level of trust between law enforcement agencies and the people they serve.
Outlined in a newly released report titled “Federal Support for Local Law Enforcement Equipment Acquisition,” White House officials have detailed a community policing initiative that proposes a three-year $263 million investment package that will increase the use of body-worn cameras, expand training for law enforcement agencies (LEA), add more resources for police department reform, and increase the number of cities where the Department of Justice facilitates community and local LEA engagement. Of the $263 million, the new initiative will invest $75 million to help purchase 50,000 body worn cameras for police officials.
While the cameras are a sign of the federal government putting forth effort to build a better level of trust between law enforcement and the people they serve, Press Secretary Josh Earnest makes it clear that body cameras will not provide a solution to all of the problems at hand.
“I don’t think there’s anybody who thinks that that’s going to solve every single problem or that that’s going to address every issue related to mistrust that might exist between some communities and their local law enforcement officials,” Earnest said.