Major California police unions pledge to root out racist officers

Police unions from San Francisco, San Jose and Los Angeles are unveiling a reform agenda to find racist officers among their ranks and "root those individuals out of the law enforcement profession," according to a statement released early Sunday morning.

The San Jose Police Officers Association, the San Francisco Police Officers Association and the Los Angeles Police Protective League are announcing this effort with full-page ads in the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle and the San Jose Mercury News.

The unions' national reform plan, comes after the deaths of several African American men in police custody throughout the country, including the May 25 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

The reform proposals include a national database of former police officers fired for gross misconduct, in order to help prevent other agencies from hiring them; a national use-of-force standard that emphasizes a reverence for life, de-escalation, a duty to intercede if witnessing excessive force or misconduct, proportional responses to dangerous incidents and strong accountability provisions; an early warning system to identify officers that may need more training and mentoring; ongoing and frequent crisis intervention and de-escalation training of police officers; and a transparent and publicly accessible use-of-force analysis website that allows the public to monitor when and how force is used.

The three unions are also issuing a joint statement acknowledging that there are racist police officers, and the unions' commitment to find and get rid of those officers.

"Our unions are committed to the continuous improvement of policing in America," the statement reads, in part. " We believe that each of our departments has made tremendous strides in strengthening accountability, 
transparency and adopting policies that reduce the number and severity of 
uses-of-force. However, we can do more, and we believe this agenda should be 
adopted across our nation as an important step toward improving police and 
community outcomes."