Cuomo Vows to Improve Relationships Between Police and Residents
Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants to strengthen the relationship between police in the Hudson Valley and the communities they serve.
On Tuesday, Gov. Cuomo announced his 34th proposal of his 2020 State of the State - strengthening the relationship between local police and their communities.
The relationship between law enforcement and some local communities is severely stressed following several viral videos showing recent interactions between police and civilians, according to the Governor's office.
For example, here in the local area, in March, a 17-second viral video posted to social media of police responding to the scene showed an officer yanking and slamming a young girl to the ground in Poughkeepsie.
"As our nation confronts the toxic mix of anxiety, fear and division, many of our communities are facing challenges in the relationship between local police and the communities they serve," Cuomo said. "The stressed relationship has been compounded by viral videos showing recent interactions between police and civilians that have understandably caused an emotional reaction among the public.
To help address this situation, Cuomo is proposing a new policy in which the State Attorney General Letitia James will address tensions in police-community relations and identify solutions to improve that relationship.
"We are all better off when our police and the communities they serve build stronger relationships," James said. "New Yorkers deserve to be safe and respected at the same time and better police-community relations go a long way toward that goal. I welcome the opportunity to play a role in improving police-community relations."
According to the Governor's office, the incidents shown in the recent viral videos have demonstrated the need for a credible official who can step in and help look at the root causes of this strained dynamic, identify necessary interventions and develop proposed reforms to improve policing practices, and ultimately help relieve tensions between the two.
"Attorney General James is a superb leader and as the state's chief law enforcement officer and a former public advocate she is uniquely suited to help bridge that divide by providing community members and police an opportunity to form a stronger relationship based in respect and trust," Cuomo said.
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