Jan 14 2015

Ready to Wear

In the wake of recent news, President Obama recently proposed reimbursing communities half the cost incurred by police departments to buy body cameras and store video.

If the plan receives congressional approval, the initiative would grant $75 million in matching funds to states and localities over three years to help pay for 50,000 wearable cameras.

The purpose of the deployment is to build and sustain trust between communities and law enforcement.

A study from the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) points to several benefits of wearable cameras, including improved accountability and transparency, reduced complaints, identification of internal problems and evidence documentation. However, police departments will need to consider how to identify what to record, as well as where to store footage and for how long. They will also need to create public disclosure policies. PERF recommends that agencies develop a comprehensive written policy governing the use of body cameras.