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Policing

Law enforcement must protect both public safety and the rights of individuals. This is why arrests and use of force should be last resorts, not first options, for police. The ACLU-WA advocates for stronger laws involving police use of force, alternatives to arrest and incarceration, and de-escalation practices and  training. And to ensure law enforcement is accountable to the people they serve, the ACLU-WA works for greater community oversight, such as independent civilian review boards with disciplinary authority.
Change state law on prosecuting police for killings
Confronting Race and Policing
Demand justice: There must be a just response to the killing of Charleena Lyles
Know your rights:  Download our guide on what to do if you're stopped by the police

Resources

Published: 
Thursday, April 5, 2012
Earlier today, the ACLU of Washington joined a number of allies in the immigrant rights community, including El Comite Pro-Reforma Migratoria and CASA Latina, at a press conference in opposition to the ever-expanding Secure Communities (S Comm) program. The press conference was a response to the federal government's move last week, with very little fanfare or publicity, to activate the program for all counties in Washington. Here's why that's bad news for every community in Washington.
Published: 
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
The innovative Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (“LEAD”) pre-booking diversion pilot program has now been operating since fall of 2011. Instead of arresting low-level drug offenders and prosecuting them, law enforcement diverts them to community-based treatment and support services. The LEAD program also has a new website (www.LEADKingCounty.org).
Published: 
Tuesday, February 7, 2012
An important statewide Latino organization in Washington State has weighed in against gang injunction legislation in the state legislature. Here's what Latino Civic Alliance has to say.
Published: 
Friday, December 16, 2011
I returned, very happily, from the Department of Justice press conference this morning. The DOJ’s in-depth report confirms what the ACLU has been saying and what many people of color and others have experienced – that the Seattle Police Department has engaged in a pattern and practice of excessive use of force.
Published: 
Friday, November 18, 2011
In 2010, the ACLU of Washington was instrumental in the passage of the nation’s second “911 Good Samaritan” law. New research from the University of Washington’s Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute shows that the 911 Good Samaritan law works.
Published: 
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
On October 22, the Minority Executive Directors Coalition (MEDC) of King County presented the ACLU-WA its Founders Award for our work calling for a Department of Justice investigation of the Seattle Police Department and advocating for communities of color.
Published: 
Monday, October 17, 2011
Public photography regrettably has become a suspect activity in the minds of some officials. Back in 2007, the ACLU-WA successfully advocated for a man whom Seattle police arrested for taking photos of police making an arrest near 2nd & Pike downtown.
Published: 
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
The United States Supreme Court soon is going to consider a case involving warrantless use of a GPS tracking device, in a case the New York Times has called “the most important Fourth Amendment case in a decade.”
Published: 
Thursday, August 11, 2011
On the heels of Seattle Weekly reporter Nina Shapiro’s in-depth examination of the Border Patrol’s aggressive tactics on the Olympic Peninsula (“Twilight for Immigrants”) comes a revelation that sheds light on the troubling situation. In a follow-up story, Shapiro reports about a Border Patrol whistleblower who has come forward to assert that BP agents don’t have meaningful work to do far from our northern border. 
Published: 
Monday, July 18, 2011
Last May we were stunned to see video of a Seattle police officer yelling racial slurs at a Latino man lying prone on the ground and kicking him in the head while another officer stomped on his legs.  This incident was one of many that led the ACLU and 34 other organizations to ask the Department of Justice to investigate the Seattle Police Department for racially biased policing. 

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