PRESS RELEASE: Friday, September 3, 2021
CONTACT: Morgan Keller, Communications Director, ACLU-DE, mkeller@aclu-de.org

ACLU of Delaware Calls on Public to Make Comment on Regulating the Use of Body Cameras by Law Enforcement

WILMINGTON—On September 2, 2021, the Delaware Council on Police Training held its first of two public meetings to begin the process of setting forth regulations for the use of body-worn cameras by law enforcement. This is a process that requires public input, and the ACLU of Delaware is calling on Delawareans to submit public comment at the next meeting on Thursday, September 9, 2021.

House Bill 195, passed by the General Assembly and signed by the Governor on July 21, 2021, requires certain police officers and other employees of the Department of Correction to use body-worn cameras to record interactions with members of the public. This bill also requires the Council on Police Training to create regulations for body-worn cameras to ensure consistent use by 2022.

With yesterday’s meeting, The Council on Police Training has begun the process of regulation-setting — and ACLU-DE says it is critical that people from all communities in Delaware take this opportunity to make sure their voices are heard in this process.

Javonne Rich, policy and advocacy director at ACLU-DE, stated in her public comment at last night’s meeting: “Spending millions on technology because of its promise to build trust between communities and police, but not requiring departments to use this technology in ways that will actually build trust, would not only squander taxpayer money but also waste a valuable opportunity to change the dynamic of policing in Delaware.”

ACLU-DE points to an ACLU National model bill as a good example of what to include in a set of regulations governing the use of body-worn cameras, and offers a set of talking points on their website to help the public craft their own public comments.

The next meeting hosted by the Council on Police Training will be next Thursday, September 9, at 6 p.m. at the New Castle County Police Department — 3601 N. Dupont Hwy. New Castle, DE 19720. At this time, these public comment sessions are in-person and there is no virtual attendance option.

If you cannot attend a meeting in-person, you can submit your written public comment to: Susan McNatt at (302) 739-5903 or send an email addressed to susan.a.mcnatt@delaware.gov.