Seattle Mayor Ed Murray will sign a new law on bias-free policing Friday.
The law aims to reduce bias shown by police against minority groups. Additionally, it allows people to take action, in civil court, for a monetary award.
“I am proud of the fact Seattle is introducing legislation at the local level for us to look at and at least identify the patterns and practices of police officers,” said Gerald Hankerson, President of Seattle King County National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. “We need to stop racial profiling and end the injustice.”
The policies have been in place for a couple of years as part of the consent decree with the Department of Justice, but this law makes it part of the city code.
The legislation also impacts the Priority Hire program. When signed, city construction projects adding up to at least $5 million will be required to include workers who live in areas where more than 40 percent of the residents have an annual income below the poverty level. The projects will also require apprentice opportunities for women and people of color.
Murray will sign the new legislation at 10:30 a.m. City Councilmembers, as well as community members and advocates, will be present at the signing.