Assemblyman Philip Ramos (D-Central Islip) announced Assembly passage of a bill he supported that would prohibit law enforcement officers from using racial and ethnic profiling (A.627).
Ramos, a former Suffolk police officer of 20 years, said the bill would require data collection on stops and stop-and-frisk incidents, and establish procedures for civil remedies for complaints.
“Pulling someone over simply because of the color of his or her skin or ethnic background is not only constitutionally wrong, it’s also counterproductive,” Ramos said. “It’s a poor, ineffective use of law enforcement resources that takes the focus off of real police work.”
Cases of racial profiling – a product of the war on drugs conceived to identify narcotic traffickers – have steadily increased in recent years, drawing complaints from citizens and minority advocates and creating a rift between communities and the police charged with their protection, said Ramos.
“It’s important that citizens trust the officers that protect and serve them,” Ramos said. “Without that trust, crimes go unreported, relationships deteriorate, and the entire community suffers for it. This legislation is a good step toward restoring that trust and strengthening our communities.”