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WASHINGTON – The Department of Justice today announced that it had reached a settlement with the town of East Haven, Conn. in its investigation into alleged biased policing of Latinos by the town’s police department. The agreement provides for core reforms in seven key areas (full list here).
“This settlement agreement is a welcome sign the federal government is taking action to protect people of color from having their most basic rights compromised by racial profiling,” said Dennis Parker, director of the ACLU Racial Justice Program. “With racial profiling occurring in Connecticut and anti-immigrant laws that started in Arizona since spreading to Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and Utah, it’s clear that the trend of unlawful discrimination against immigrants is widespread. We call on the federal government to continue to take aggressive action in each and every instance in which it is warranted.”
“Unfortunately, many of the practices that the East Haven Police Department has used to intimidate and harass Latino residents are not unique to that city,” added Andrew Schneider, executive director of the ACLU of Connecticut. “We regularly hear complaints from around our state about racial profiling, harassment for recording police activity, intimidation to discourage civilian complaints, misuse of Tasers and other abuses of police power. We encourage police chiefs to read the consent decree with an eye toward adopting similar reforms wherever needed.”