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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: December 1, 2020 01:04 PM
From: Senator Sharif Street
To: All Senate members
Subject: Prohibiting the Use of Chokeholds by Those in Law Enforcement
In the near future, I will reintroduce legislation that will prohibit the use of chokeholds by those in law enforcement. This bill unanimously passed the Senate in the 2019-2020 session but was not considered by the House.

This is a common-sense reform that will help our police do their jobs and protect our citizens from abuse. It has widespread, bi-partisan support, and acknowledges the public demand for change in response to the May 25, 2020 murder of George Floyd. In addition to banning chokeholds, this bill also requires all Pennsylvania law enforcement agencies to develop a public “use of force” policy and provide regular training on the policy for its law enforcement officers.

These reforms are necessary. Chokehold restraints are  not consistent with good policing, as recognized by many officers around the commonwealth, and are already prohibited by supporters of this measure: the PA Attorney General’s office and the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association (which accredits 10% of law enforcement agencies in Pennsylvania). The bill also has support from traditional criminal justice reform groups like the ACLU and is supported by important law enforcement stakeholders such as the Pennsylvania’s District Attorneys Association and the Pennsylvania Fraternal Order of Police.

Please join me as a co-sponsor of this important legislation. If you have any questions, please contact my Policy Director, Micah Mahjoubian, at micah@pasenate.com.

Introduced as SB142