The U.S. Conference of Mayors
2007 ADOPTED RESOLUTIONS
CRIMINAL AND SOCIAL JUSTICE

BUILDING SAFER COMMUNITIES THROUGH DEPLOYMENT OF LESS-LETHAL POLICE TECHNOLOGIES

WHEREAS, The U.S. Conference of Mayors has worked for nearly a decade to provide information and assistance to mayors and police chiefs on a variety of community policing and other criminal justice issues by convening meetings of mayors and police chiefs, developing publications on city programs, and disseminating information on innovative crime prevention and enforcement programs in cities and on critical research; and

WHEREAS, safer communities start with demystifying policing, with helping communities to understand how law enforcement works and how to work with it, and with building and maintaining community trust and confidence in police officers; and

WHEREAS, in an on-going effort to make our communities safer for all citizens, law enforcement is deploying more less-lethal options as a way of de-escalating potentially violent situations; and

WHEREAS, electronic control devices have been demonstrated to be one of the safest and most effective less-lethal options available to law enforcement; and

WHEREAS, more than 10,500 federal, state and local law enforcement agencies currently deploy electronic control devices, and

WHEREAS, statistical data has shown dramatic decreases in officer and subject injuries in cities where electronic control devices are deployed; and

WHEREAS, reducing officer and citizen injuries furthers the goals of community oriented policing by building community ties with law enforcement to make our cities safer; and

WHEREAS, statistical data has shown that a reduction in injuries to both suspects and law enforcement officers translates directly into communities savings through fewer lost wages, workmen's compensation, and lawsuits; and

WHEREAS, public education, sound community-based policies, proper training, and appropriate use of electronic control devices are crucial to maintaining their efficacy and safety; and

WHEREAS, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) has developed a nine-step guideline to help law enforcement agencies first deploy electronic control devices and develop policies, procedures and training curricula that are responsive and relevant to the communities they serve; and

WHEREAS, the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) has developed independent guidelines addressing a broad spectrum of issues pertaining to electronic control devices and generally focusing on use issues, including safety, training, and operational protocols; and

WHEREAS, The U.S. Conference of Mayors previously has taken strong positions in support of the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program, against gang violence, and for safer communities; and

WHEREAS, the mission of the COPS program is to increase the ranks of local law enforcement agencies and to provide training and grant funds to enable local agencies to acquire new technologies and equipment while promoting innovative approaches to fighting crime,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The U.S Conference of Mayors urges cities seeking to deploy, or currently deploying, electronic control devices to review and consider the guidelines developed by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Police Executive Research Forum; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors calls on Congress to continue to support the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) within the U.S. Department of Justice, and specifically its ability to provide direct funding to assist local law enforcement agencies in acquiring new technologies and equipment, including state-ofthe-art less-lethal technologies such as electronic control devices, and implement community-based policies and programs governing appropriate training, use and placement of such devices in the local use-of-force continuum.

2007 The U.S. Conference of Mayors
Tom Cochran, Executive Director
1620 Eye Street, NW, Washington, DC 20006
Tel. 202.293.7330 ~ Fax 202.293.2352
info@usmayors.org