Dearborn Police have repeatedly harmed individuals and our communities, and are not held accountable for their role in perpetrating these injustices. We demand enforceable accountability practices that reduce harms, and prevent additional harms from occurring.
Accountability and transparency measures share a dependent relationship with one another. Transparency without adequate accountability measures simply results in circumstances where abuses are visible but not addressed. Accountability measures without adequate transparency cannot be meaningfully taken. We demand Dearborn City Officials hold Dearborn Police accountable in all aspects of their operations and impact on our communities in the following ways
Civilian Oversight Commission
As a result of Dearborn Police’s long standing pattern of targeting and abuse of Black and vulnerable civilians, the most urgent accountability measure to install is a civilian oversight commission of the Dearborn Police Department. We recommend the model for civilian oversight described by the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement.
The civilian oversight commission will have two primary directives. First, to address and resolve complaints. This includes investigating reports of officer misconduct and ensuring appropriate actions are taken. Second, this includes review of all released data to generate policy recommendations that the City of Dearborn is required to discuss and vote on. In order to fulfill these directives, the committee must have subpoena power, and full participation in the City of Dearborn Committee of the Whole.
All committee operations must be fully transparent to the public. This includes going beyond what is required by the Open Meetings Act, and providing meaningful ways in which the public can engage with the commission.
Reduce Violence from Dearborn Police
Violence created by Dearborn Police is a serious concern in our communities, and has resulted in severe injuries and loss of lives for civilians. The Dearborn Police Department must be held accountable for reducing the violence of individual officers, with particular emphasis on protecting Black individuals, and vulnerable populations. This must include changes to operational policies that are enforced with strictly enforced consequences for abuse. We recommend establishing a Use of Force standard from what the officer perceives as “reasonable” to that which is “necessary”. We also recommend adopting policies which ban no knock raids and tactics that impair breathing.
Officers found to disregard any of these standards must be held accountable for their actions. This includes publicly available documentation of the incident, and corresponding disciplinary actions taken. Any officer who takes actions which result in physical harm to a civilian, victim, or suspect must be prosecuted and fired. Any officer who discharges their weapon must submit to an mandatory drug and alcohol test within one hour of the incident. Additionally, a duty to intervene must be established and enforced at the city level.
Preventative measures must also be taken to reduce the violence and harm created by Dearborn Police. This includes termination of any officer who publicly shared (via social media or other public platforms) racist ideologies. Additionally, the department must commit to not hiring officers who were previously fired or resigned for misconduct including the use of excessive force or convicted of domestic violence.
Establish Union Contracts Which Incorporate Strong Accountability Measures
Police Union contracts can be used to suppress or support officer accountability measures. The City of Dearborn cannot accept any union contracts which interfere with individual officer accountability. Any approved police union contracts must:
Eliminate officers’ ability to review evidence before submitting to an investigation.
Allow for the investigation of all civilian complaints, regardless of when filed.
Prohibit the destruction of personnel files and complaints.
End arbitration after internal discipline occurs.
End indemnification for police abuse.
Permit disciplinary measures to be taken as the result of random review of dashboard camera and body camera footage