Read the PDF of our statement here.
LDF Statement on Selection of the Civilian Oversight Task Force in Baltimore
Late yesterday, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh announced the appointment of nine residents to the Civilian Oversight Task Force, which will be responsible for reviewing and commenting on the city’s current system of civilian oversight of the police department. Monique Dixon, Deputy Director of Policy and Senior Counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) issued the following statement in response:
“Members of the Civilian Oversight Task Force have much work to do in only 11 months. We urge the city to provide to them the resources they will need to do their work, including access to local and national experts on various models of community oversight of police departments, as well as to data, police policies, and personnel connected to the investigation of complaints filed against police.
“As the consent decree requires, we encourage members to diligently identify any impediments to the police department’s civilian complaint process ‘that inhibit the ability of the Baltimore community to obtain accountability for misconduct.’ We also urge Task Force members to consult with their fellow residents as they develop recommendations, particularly residents in the communities highlighted in the Justice Department’s investigative report that experience police presence on a regular basis. We look forward to attending public meetings of the Task Force, and reviewing and commenting on the recommendations members will present to city officials, as required by the consent decree.”
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization and has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.