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Executive Orders Regarding Police Reform

This page contains the pertinent New York State and Federal Government legislation and executive orders regarding police reforms that must be enacted by April 1, 2021.

  • Each local government entity which has a police agency must perform a comprehensive review of current police force deployments, strategies, policies, procedures, and practices, and develop a plan to improve such practices for the purposes of addressing the particular needs of the communities served by such police agency and promote community engagement to foster trust, fairness, and legitimacy, and to address any racial bias and disproportionate policing of communities of color.
  • Each chief executive of such local government shall convene the head of the local police agency, and stakeholders in the community to develop such plan, which shall consider evidence-based policing strategies, including but not limited to
    • use of force policies, procedural justice;
    • any studies addressing systemic racial bias or racial justice in policing;
    • implicit bias awareness training; 
    • de-escalation training and practices; 
    • law enforcement assisted diversion programs; 
    • restorative justice practices; 
    • community-based outreach and conflict resolution; 
    • problem-oriented policing; 
    • hot spots policing; 
    • focused deterrence;
    • crime prevention through environmental design;
    • violence prevention and reduction interventions; 
    • model policies and guidelines promulgated by the New York State Municipal Police Training Council; and 
    • standards promulgated by the New York State Law Enforcement Accreditation Program.
  • The local government, in coordination with its police agency, must consult with stakeholders, including but not limited to:
    • membership and leadership of the local police force; 
    • members of the community, with emphasis in areas with high numbers of police and community interactions; 
    • interested non-profit and faith-based community groups; 
    • the local office of the district attorney; 
    • the local public defender; and local elected officials.
  • With this group they must create a plan to adopt and implement the recommendations resulting from its review and consultation, including any modifications, modernizations, and innovations to its policing deployments, strategies, policies, procedures, and practices, tailored to the specific needs of the community and general promotion of improved police agency and community relationships based on trust, fairness, accountability, and transparency, and which seek to reduce any racial disparities in policing.
  • Such plan shall be offered for public comment to all citizens in the locality, and after consideration of such comments, shall be presented to the local legislative body in such political subdivision, which shall ratify or adopt such plan by local law or resolution, as appropriate, no later than April 1, 2021.
  • Such local government shall transmit a certification to the Director of the Division of the Budget to affirm that such process has been complied with and such local law or resolution has been adopted.
  • The Director of the Division of the Budget shall be authorized to condition receipt of future appropriated state or federal funds upon filing of such certification for which such local government would otherwise be eligible.

View the official order

View NYS guidance, framework and resources re: police reform


  • Certification and Credentialing
    • The Attorney General shall allocate Department of Justice discretionary grant funding only to those State and local law enforcement agencies that have sought or are in the process of seeking appropriate credentials from a reputable independent credentialing body certified by the Attorney General.

    • The Attorney General shall certify independent credentialing bodies that meet standards to be set by the Attorney General. The Attorney General’s standards for certification shall require independent credentialing bodies to, at a minimum, confirm that

      • the law enforcement agency’s use-of-force policies adhere to all applicable Federal, State, and local laws; and

      • the agency’s use-of-force policies prohibit the use of chokeholds - a physical maneuver that restricts an individual’s ability to breathe for the purposes of incapacitation - except in those situations where the use of deadly force is allowed by law. 

    • Information Sharing

      • The Attorney General shall create a database to coordinate the sharing of information between and among Federal, State, local, tribal, and territorial law enforcement agencies concerning instances of excessive use of force related to law enforcement matters, accounting for applicable privacy and due process rights.

      • The database shall include a mechanism to track, as permissible, terminations or de-certifications of law enforcement officers, criminal convictions of law enforcement officers for on-duty conduct, and civil judgments against law enforcement officers for improper use of force.  It shall account for instances where a law enforcement officer resigns or retires while under active investigation related to the use of force.  The Attorney General shall take appropriate steps to ensure that the information in the database consists only of instances in which law enforcement officers were afforded fair process.

      • The Attorney General shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, allocate Department of Justice discretionary grant funding only to those law enforcement agencies that submit the necessary information to the databases.

    • Mental Health, Homelessness, and Addiction

      • The Attorney General shall, in consultation with the Secretary of Health and Human Services as appropriate, identify and develop opportunities to train law enforcement officers with respect to encounters with individuals suffering from impaired mental health, homelessness, and addiction; to increase the capacity of social workers working directly with law enforcement agencies; and to provide guidance regarding the development and implementation of co-responder programs, which involve social workers or other mental health professionals working alongside law enforcement officers so that they arrive and address situations together.  

 View the official order