In 1958, Philadelphia became the first city in the nation to introduce the idea of police oversight with the establishment of the Police Review Board. During these last 63 years the oversight agency has taken on several forms; from being dissolved entirely in 1969, reborn in 1993, and strengthened in 2017. Due to the dedication of Philadelphia residents and the hard-working members of City Council, police oversight can now transition to an independent agency.
The new legislation, which identifies the role and responsibilities of the Citizen’s Police Oversight Commission (CPOC), creates new powers for CPOC while also continuing Police Advisory Commission practices that have proven impactful. This legislation tremendously increases transparency of police misconduct and discipline, and empowers civilians to lead investigations of complaints against police; a power that is currently the sole jurisdiction of the Philadelphia Police Department.
The CPOC will need adequate funding to effectively execute all powers and responsibility assigned therein. The CPOC requires a talented staff of trained investigators, policy practitioners, lawyers, data analysts, community liaisons, and administrative staff who have the desire and dedication to improve policing in Philadelphia. Within these next few months, the PAC anticipates meeting with residents and stakeholders to ensure the success of this legislation. During this time the PAC will continue the work of police oversight until the transition into the CPOC is complete.
The PAC looks forward to the passage of this necessary legislation. We invite the public to join us at 6:00pm on February 22nd for our public meeting. Residents can access the Zoom meeting by following this link: https://tinyurl.com/PACFeb21
Please contact the PAC at email@example.com or 215-685-0891 with questions.