Today, Rep. Mark Takano (D-Calif.) released this statement following the passage of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2020 in the House, a comprehensive, transformative piece of legislation to reform our justice system.
"Addressing the racism that is so deeply-rooted in our institutions will not be fixed with sentiment alone, it is going to require bold legislative action. We have lost many innocent Black lives due to police brutality and racial profiling, and the law enforcement officers involved in these murders have not faced meaningful consequences. This needs to change. That's why today, I voted in support of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, legislation that would begin the process of reforming policing in America and provide accountability for communities that have suffered generational injustices at the hands of those sworn to protect them.
"The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act bans chokeholds and no-knock warrants, which led to the deaths of George Floyd, Eric Garner, and Breonna Taylor; it establishes guidelines that will keep our communities safe by creating a national database to track police misconduct and demilitarizing our police; and this legislation will bring justice to victims of police abuse by reforming the qualified immunity doctrine, which shields law enforcement from facing accountability when they violate people's rights or engage in serious misconduct.
"This is only the first step in changing the nature of policing in America, which is currently a broken and racist system that has led to the over policing of Black communities that often cause unnecessary and dangerous confrontations, the overincarceration of Black Americans, and the unjust deaths of too many Black men and women.
"Protesters nationwide are making their voices heard -- they are demanding real change and are forcing the nation into action. By passing the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act we can show them that we are listening to their pleas, that we agree that "Black Lives Matter,' and that we stand with them. We can, and must, do better as a country to challenge the status quo, to combat systemic racism, and to implement real, bold changes to our laws and our institutions in order to make America a fair, just, and safe place for all. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to do the right thing, to stand with the American people, and to pass this legislation. Inaction is injustice."