Norton, Ocasio-Cortez to Introduce Bill Requiring All Law Enforcement Officers’ Uniforms to Identify Their Name, Agency
WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14) will introduce the Law Enforcement Identification Transparency Act of 2020, requiring all federal and local law enforcement officers to identify their name, agency, and badge number on their uniform at all times while on duty or serving the public. The bill conditions federal funding for local and state law enforcement on the inclusion of identifying information on their uniforms.
“A number of members from the national capital region and I earlier introduced a bill, the Law Enforcement Identification Act, to require federal police officers to wear identification at demonstrations,” Norton said. “This week, I am pleased to introduce a bill requiring all officers, including local police, to wear identification at all times.
“As we have seen, when police are needed, it is often all 'hands on deck.' While local police are often identified, there is no federal statute requiring it. This bill anticipates and seeks to prevent issues we have seen with federal police in recent weeks.”
“Secret police snatching Americans off of street corners and shooting rubber bullets at peaceful demonstrators is something we would expect to see in an authoritarian state, not outside the White House. Yet, that is our current reality,” said Ocasio-Cortez. “This bill will increase accountability and oversight for law enforcement. Currently, law enforcement can violate an American’s First Amendment rights with complete anonymity. If an officer violates their agency's policies, their victim should have the ability to report them to their agency and demand accountability.”
Additionally, the bill requires each federal law enforcement agency to implement a policy that is in accordance with the bill's outlined goals and requires data reporting on compliance with that policy. The full bill text is available here.