Brooklyn applauds appointment of NYC’s first police inspector
New York City appears to be on the road to reforming significant functions of the New York City Police Department — Commissioner of the New York City Department of Investigation Mark G. Peters has appointed the NYC’s first-ever police inspector.
Philip K. Eure will head the Office of Inspector General for the NYPD, an office created by the Community Safety Act (CSA), enacted by the City Council over former Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s veto.
“The City Council fought hard for the creation of the Inspector General, and we look forward to working with Philip Eure, the Department of Investigations and the NYPD to help make New York City a safer place while also respecting civil liberties,” Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito said in a released statement.
Eure hails from Washington, D.C., where he previously headed the Office of Police Complaints — an unit he commanded since its inception. In that role, Eure gained significant knowledge of police oversight, civil rights issues and handling civilian complaints with care.
“[W]e are pleased that Philip Eure has been appointed to this new role,” Council Member Jumaane D. Williams (D-Flatbush) and Council Member Brad Lander (D-Park Slope/Kensington), said in a joint statement.
“Mr. Eure has all of the qualifications one would want from an inspector general, having led Washington, D.C’s Office of Police Complaints since this office’s inception, to his experience as a prosecutor with the United Stated Department of Justice and his expertise in police oversight,” the co-sponsors of the CSA, Williams and Lander, noted.
The CSA instituted a set of legislation that establishes an inspector general to oversee the New York Police Department’s practices and policies as well as an enforceable ban on bias-based profiling within the NYPD.
The CSA also provides a means for persons who believe they have been unjustly profiled by the NYPD to bring legal action. In addition, the law further expands the prohibition of bias-based profiling to cover age, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, immigration status, disability and housing status.
Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg vehemently opposed the CSA and filed an instant appeal to the legislation. The New York City Council overturned his veto to pass the legislation. It was challenged by the Bloomberg administration in court last September.
When elected to office this past November, Mayor de Blasio pledged to drop the litigation as part of a series of reforms to a broken stop-and-frisk policy and to help rebuild the relationship between police and community.
“There is absolutely no contradiction in protecting the public safety of New Yorkers and respecting their civil liberties. In fact, those two priorities must go hand in hand,” de Blasio said.
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