The Police Accountability Board Alliance is wrapping up what some see as a three-year battle.
In May, the Rochester city council approved legislation for the Police Accountability Board. The legislation will appear on November ballots.
“This is really the final point of our campaign just a nice evening to have a nice time. To really connect with people get ready for the fall and you know move on the last bit of this campaign,” said Ted Forsyth, member of executive committee police accountability board alliance.
The main goal, to hold police accountable for misconduct. The independent accountability board will be based on 5 pillars. Found on the PAB website they are;
- An independent agency of city government, separate from RPD
- The power to independently investigate complaints of police misconduct
- Subpoena power to compel the production of evidence and witnesses
- Disciplinary power
- The power to review and evaluate RPD patterns, practices, policies and procedures to recommend systemic changes and to prevent misconduct from happening in the first place.
Early this year, Rochester Police Locust Club protested the legislation. Locust Club President Mike Mazzeo says it’s not in the best interest of public safety. He claimed the board violates state civil service law and the police union’s labor contract with the city.
Some at the event on Saturday called the legislation a milestone
“The police can no longer police themselves so what this police accountability board will do, what this legislation that we’re pushing for to be passed on November 5th is to allow that type of power” + “to be led by the people in the community,” said Pastor Wanda Wilson, on executive board
“The police and every other institution and arm of government has to be accountable to the people that both pay their taxes but also reside in the community.it just has to be just for all,” said Rachel DeGuzman, founder of WOC art collaborative.
Leaders said a big push behind this board was the number of police conduct cases they say go un-disciplined.
On the other side, those who oppose are questioning the oversight of this independent board.
The PAB alliance is planning on going out every Saturday to talk to voters.
That legislation will be on the ballot on November 5th.