Police Reform

driver's view of police car in rear view mirror

Reimagining Policing: Strategies for Community Reinvestment

NASW Social Justice Brief, October 2020
The nation is demanding an immediate review and overhaul of the role of law enforcement in maintaining public safety. Simply stated, the purview of policing can no longer be all-encompassing—certain functions currently carried out by the police should be assumed by other professionals.
Read "Reimagining Policing"

NASW Seeks to Dismantle Racist Policing

Racism is real and must be eliminated. Police brutality is real and must be eliminated. Oppressive policing is real and must be eliminated. NASW stands against racism, police brutality and oppressive policing.
Read NASW's July 14, 2020, news release

NASW condemns yet another incident of lethal police force against an African American

The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) strongly condemns the continued death of unarmed people who are African American at the hands of police. We renew our call for the nation to adopt policing reforms to address this crisis. And we offer our condolences to the families of the people who have died.
Read NASW's May 28, 2020, news release

NASW Resources

Partner Resources

New Era of Public Safety: A Guide to Fair, Safe, and Effective Community Policing

This Leadership Conference Education Fund report features tools to increase trust, fairness, justice, and mutual respect between police departments and the communities they serve. The campaign guidebook and toolkit offer community-centered policy solutions to equip communities and police departments with best practices and recommendations for adopting 21st century policing models, including tools for advocacy.

Re-imagining Public Safety: Prevent Harm and Lead with the Truth

This report outlines a five-step policy plan for policing in America, from the Justice Collaboratory at Yale Law School and the Center for Policing Equity.

Anguish and Action

More than 1,000 people are killed by police every year in America, and Black people are three times more likely to be killed than White people. We must take steps and make reforms to combat police violence and systemic racism within law enforcement.

NAACP Legal Defense Fund Policing Reform Campaign Policing Reform Campaign

This campaign seeks to transform policing culture and practices, eliminate racial bias and profiling in policing, and end police violence against citizens. The Race and Policing Reform campaign seeks to promote unbiased and responsible policing policies and practices at the national, state and local levels.

Final Report from President Obama’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing

Trust between law enforcement agencies and the people they protect and serve is essential in a democracy. It is key to the stability of our communities, the integrity of our criminal justice system, and the safe and effective delivery of policing services.

The task force recommendations and action items are organized around six topic areas: Building Trust and Legitimacy, Policy and Oversight, Technology and Social Media, Community Policing and Crime Reduction, Officer Training and Education, and Officer Safety and Wellness.

Vera Institute of Justice

Center for Policing Equity: Research

Assessing the State of Police Reform - Center for American Progress

Congress and Police Reform: Current Law and Recent Proposals - Congressional Research Service

APA Study Reveals Police Officers Are More Condescending and Less Respectful to Black Drivers They Pull Over

For any Black man or woman who has ever been pulled over for speeding or a traffic infraction, it’s not just your imagination that police officers are more condescending, aggressive and less respectful. New research from the American Psychological Association confirms that the average police officer speaks to Black drivers in a “more disrespectful tone” during a typical traffic stop than they do to white drivers.

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NASW is committed to ending racism through public education, social justice advocacy and professional training. We need your help to do this work.

Mapping Police Violence

Black people have been 28 percent of those killed by police since 2013 despite being only 13 percent of the population.

See the police violence data