The ACLU of New Jersey applauded the Assembly, which passed two key bills yesterday during the lame duck session: one mandating independent investigations and prosecutions when police officers kill, and another to require criminal justice policies come with racial and ethnic impact statements. Governor Christie had previously conditionally vetoed the impact statements bill with minor changes. Now that the Legislature has approved the changes, the bill goes back to Gov. Christie’s desk, along with the independent prosecutor bill. The ACLU-NJ urges Gov. Christie to swiftly sign these bills into law.
The following statements can be attributed to ACLU-NJ Policy Counsel Dianna Houenou.
On A1115, independent prosecutors for police killings:
“We give police officers extraordinary power, including the power to take a life, and the public deserves to hold law enforcement accountable when they exercise those powers. This bill is a powerful, necessary step in that direction. We commend the sponsors and the members of the Assembly who voted for it, and we urge Governor Christie to sign it into law.”
On A3677, racial and ethnic impact statements:
“New Jersey is close to implementing a powerful tool that will shine a light on our current disparities and on the impact of future proposals that could worsen them. We have the worst Black-white disparity in incarceration in the nation, and this measure is a monumental step in guiding us toward a more just New Jersey.”