President Barrack Obama is seeking to limit the use of military style equipment in the local police forces such as armor vehicles, high-caliber firearms and riot control gears that are quite unnecessary in local law enforcement, New York Times reports.
The Presidential ruling made on Monday, 18th May comes in the wake of the conclusion of a task force study Barrack Obama created in January. According to NY Times, the ban is part of Mr. Obama’s push to reduce tensions between law enforcement and minority communities in reaction to the crises in Baltimore; Ferguson, Missouri and and other cities that have experienced unrest as a result of police brutality.
The American President made the announcement during a visit to Camden, New Jersey on Monday, 18th May, and is using the town as a model for good community – police relationship.
“We are, without a doubt, sitting at a defining moment in American policing,” Ronald L. Davis, the director of the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services at the Department of Justice, told reporters in a conference call organized by the White House. “We have a unique opportunity to redefine policing in our democracy, to ensure that public safety becomes more than the absence of crime, but it must also include a presence for justice.”
The expansion of military style equipment into the police force came after Sept 11th, 2001 where the Federal Government under President George W Bush promoted more militarization of the local law enforcement due to the fears of further terrorist attacks. Bush also created the Homeland Security portfolio and together with the Justice Department, turned them into quasi-military outfits with armor vehicles, assault weapons and others deemed an ‘overkill ‘ in the enforcement of laws in a civilians milieu.