Program Tracking Police Use of Force at Risk Due to Low Participation

In Summary

The FBI may have to shut down a program that keeps records of excessive use of force by police due to low participation from local law enforcement agencies.  

Efforts to reform police practices could get shut down due to low participation from local police departments.  

According to CNN, the FBI has one more year to figure out how to collect use-of-force data from law enforcement agencies across the country.  

RELATED: Deal on National Police Reform ‘Out of Reach’ As Negotiations End 

The National Use-of-Force Data Collection program was started by the FBI in 2019. The purpose of the program was to track excessive force incidents and release reports based on information provided by local, state and federal partners. This purpose is now threatened by a low participation rate and a lack of direction on how to proceed.  

A report by the US Government Accountability Office revealed participation rates might not meet the standard allowed for continuance. 

“Due to insufficient participation from law enforcement agencies, the FBI faces risks that it may not meet the participation thresholds established in Office of Management and Budget’s [OMB] terms of clearance for publishing data from the National Use-of-Force Data Collection, and therefore may never publish use of force incident data from the collection. Further, the collection itself may be discontinued as soon as the end of 2022,” the report said.  

RELATED: Biden Blames Senate Republicans After Police Reform Negotiations Fail  

Participation in programs like the National Use-of-Force Data Collection program would be mandated under the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, but the measure failed to pass in the Senate.  

To avoid the program being shut down, the Government Accountability Office sent Attorney General Merrick Garland and the FBI 11 recommendations to improve the program.  

Director of public affairs for the Department of Justice, Anthony Coley, said the department has agreed to nine of the recommendations. Additionally, the Justice Department has given $200 million to grant programs dedicated to reducing the use of excessive force in policing. 

RELATED: Police Orgs. Reject Sen. Tim Scott’s Claims as to Why Policing Act Failed   

If you or someone you know is struggling from trauma triggered by this story, resources are available here.   

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