On Wednesday, June 17, 2020 the MBLLC stood with Governor Charlie Baker to announce legislation that would establish a Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) system in Massachusetts. The initiative is the result of years of advocacy from the MBLLC and from Rep. Russell Holmes (D-Mattapan) in particular.
POST, a part of a 10-point plan announced in early June by elected officials of color from around the State, would provide a mechanism to certify and decertify police officers. Most importantly, the legislation filed by Governor Baker creates a list of offenses, including using chokeholds, that would lead to mandatory decertification that would preclude offending officers from being hired elsewhere.
View the MBLLC's statement about the legislation below along with video of the full press conference.
On Wednesday, June 17, 2020 the MBLLC met with Chairwoman Claire Cronin of the House Judiciary Committee. The meeting served as a launching pad to discuss anticipated omnibus legislation on police accountability. MBLLC members spoke candidly with Chairwoman Cronin as they explained the ails felt by their communities and offered solutions to rebuild trust in law enforcement. Chairwoman Cronin was happy to listen to the members, acknowledged the need for wide-reaching legislation, and committed to working with the MBLLC to ensure a Caucus driven process.
On Tuesday, June 16, 2020 the MBLLC co-hosted a briefing with the ACLU of Massachusetts and Mass Police Reform. The briefing centered around the need for a Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) system in Massachusetts: one of a few states without such a system. A strong POST system provides the ability to de-certify police and increase transparency and accountability.
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On Monday June 15, 2020 the MBLLC met with Senate President Karen Spilka to discuss their 10-point plan to address police accountability and reforms. Senate President Spilka committed to fast tracking legislation on this matter and working alongside the MBLLC to ensure meaningful change. View the full joint statement regarding the meeting below.
On Friday, June 12, 2020 newly elected Representative Danillo Sena accepted Chairman Carlos González' invitation to join the Massachusetts Black and Latino Legislative Caucus (MBLLC). Rep. Sena, a Dreamer/DACA recipient, is the first Brazilian-American immigrant to be elected to the State' Legislature. By joining the MBLLC Rep. Sena has grown the Caucus to 14 members strong. The MBLLC is proud and happy to welcome Rep. Sena, and looks forward to working alongside him.
Learn more about Rep. Sena here.
On Wednesday, June 10, 2020 the MBLLC met with Congressional House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal. Serving as one of the main authors for the U.S. Congress' bills providing aide in response to COVID-19, Congressman Neal was uniquely positioned to listen to the concern of the Caucus and utilize them while advocating for the next round of federal relief. Members used the opportunity to stress the need for education supports, micro-business assistance, and more while Congressman Neal emphasized how the $1t in local assistance proposed in the HEROES Act could help in exactly those areas.
On Wednesday, June 10, 2020 the MBLLC and Speaker DeLeo, of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, met via zoom to discuss the 10 point plan for police reform that was announced the previous week by various elected officials of color from throughout the State. Both the MBLLC and the Speaker found plenty of common ground and left the meeting determined to craft omnibus legislation on the matter. They both also agreed on the need for larger systemic reforms across many other aspects of government and agreed to work on those matters on a long term basis as well.
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On Thursday, June 4, 2020 the MBLLC met virtually with Governor Baker, Lt. Gov. Polito, and Sec. Turco to discuss the Caucus' calls for police reform. The emergency meeting was arranged in response to the recent killings of George
Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and others. These murders have led to protests across the country where many have taken to the streets to express their discontent and to express the urgent need for change.
The Caucus and the Governor used the meeting as an opportunity to discuss Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) and other policies/changes that can be implemented to effectively alter the status quo. The MBLLC will continue to work with the Governor to address systemic racism.
MBLLC and Other Elected Officials of Color Call for Reforms in the Wake of Anti-Police Brutality Protests
On Tuesday, June 2, 2020 the MBLLC and elected officials of color joined together to advocate for reforms in response to the recent killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and others, and the growing protests across the country. Electeds from all levels of government, including federal, state, county, and municipal, were present to share concrete and actionable steps that can be taken to combat systemic racism, police brutality, and various forms of injustice.
The full 10 point plan presented at the press conference is included below, along with a full video and press packet for the event.
MBLLC log posts are curated by the Caucus Executive Director.