Written Submission of the ACLU to the OHCHR on Human Rights Council Resolution 43/1

Document Date: December 15, 2020

On June 19, the UN Human Rights Council adopted resolution 43/1 after a historic meeting on systemic racism and police violence. The resolution mandated the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights “to prepare a report on systemic racism, violations of international human rights law against Africans and people of African descent by law enforcement agencies, especially those incidents that resulted in the death of George Floyd and other Africans and of people of African descent, to contribute to accountability and redress for victims.” The resolution also requested to “examine government responses to antiracism peaceful protests, including the alleged use of excessive force against protesters, bystanders and journalists.”

This ACLU submission focuses on police violence and structural racism in the United States and proposes concrete recommendations to work towards the effective implementation of Human Rights Council resolution 43/1. The submission puts forth a set of recommendations not only to dramatically transform use-of-force laws and improve training and oversight, but also to reduce police departments’ role, presence, responsibilities, and funding, and instead reinvest into community-based services that are better suited to respond to actual community needs.

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