In response to an all-time low level of trust between citizens and police, the White House will reportedly announce a $20 million body camera plan. The measure will be the first step in a larger plan to increase transparency in all levels of law enforcement.
According to The Hill, the Justice Department's announcement on Friday will create a new pilot program for equipping police with body cameras and serve as a definitive first step in the $75M plan proposed in December by the president. The plan will expand over three years and cover the procurement of 50,000 body-worn cameras.
Spurred by Baltimore
This announcement follows Baltimore's most violent riots in decades over the death of Freddie Gray in police custody. Charges have been filed against six officers, with Gray's death being ruled a homicide. Gray's passing follows other high-profile stories of alleged police brutality, including those involving Michael Brown and Eric Gardner.
In an age where technology plays a pivotal role in our daily lives, bystanders capturing police brutality on their phones have helped fuel the outcry for accountability.
USA Attorney General Loretta Lynch said, "Body-worn cameras hold tremendous promise for enhancing transparency, promoting accountability and advancing public safety for law enforcement officers and the communities they serve."
In addition to providing training for body cameras, the plan will also overhaul the way that local and state police get military-grade equipment. Although police-civilian relations have a long way to go, this plan could go some way toward fixing them.