Posted on March 30, 2021

New York City Council Ends Qualified Immunity for NYPD Officers

Jordan Williams, The Hill, March 26, 2021

New York City on Thursday passed a spate of police reforms including ending qualified immunity for New York Police Department (NYPD) officers. 

Qualified immunity shields state and local police from liability unless they violated a clearly established constitutional right, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.


Council Speaker Corey Johnson (D) hailed the bill’s passage, noting that the city is the first in the country to end qualified immunity.


“Rooted in our nation’s history of systemic racism, qualified immunity denied Freedom Riders justice and has been used to deny justice to victims of police abuse for decades,” Johnson continued.  {snip}


The City Council also voted to allow the Civilian Complaint Review Board to investigate police with a history of bias and racial complaints, issue quarterly reports on traffic stops and to transfer the authority of granting and suspending press passes from the NYPD to the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment.