Today Charleston-area advocates, the Justice for All Coalition, sent a memo to Charleston County leaders outlining a series of reforms that each entity must take to make Charleston County safer and more just for all.
Our fear of violent street crime should not blind us to the profound evil that is perpetrated when those sworn to uphold and enforce the law themselves become lawbreakers.
— John A. Powell, former ACLU National Legal Director
Police have the vital and difficult job of protecting public safety. Performing this job effectively does not require sacrificing civil liberties. All police agencies -- from the state patrol to city police forces -- need to respect the rights of individuals while enforcing the law. And when allegations of misconduct arise, there must be policies and mechanisms to hold police accountable for their actions.