Seventy-one percent of the D.C. police force is considering resigning if Mayor Muriel Bowser signs an emergency police reform bill that makes it easier to fire officers for misconduct and tweaks rules governing the use of deadly force, according to a poll conducted by the police union.
The D.C. Council swiftly passed the bill June 11, following mass protests over the death of George Floyd, a black man, at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis. Bowser is expected to sign the legislation.
The poll conducted by the D.C. Police Union showed 25% of the 600 surveyed said they might retire earlier than planned, while 35% are seeking jobs at other law enforcement agencies, and 39% are considering leaving law enforcement altogether.
"The DC Police Union remains steadfastly committed to important discussions on police reform and is always willing to be on the cutting edge of responsible and professional policing, but the idea that our department has systemic racism which manifests itself in brutality and civil rights violations is preposterous," the union said in a statement.
"The MPD has been at the forefront of police reform for 20 years. Problems that exist in other cities do not exist here. The language in the emergency legislation completely degrades the rights and working conditions afforded to police officers in this city. This legislation will cause an exodus of our best police officers and make hiring and retaining qualified employees next to impossible."
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