Albany forum on police body cameras

apd body camera meeting Brendan CoxThe Albany Community Policing Advisory Committee is holding another public forum about the Albany Police Department's plans for using officer-worn body cameras. It's next Tuesday, June 14 at the Washington Ave Albany Public Library at 6 pm.

Event blurbage:

Following up on the very successful forum ACPAC held in February on this topic, ACPAC has invited the Albany Police Department to give a presentation on the progress they've made in developing Body-Worn Camera Program policies and procedures since the last forum. Following the presentation, ACPAC will invite attendees to provide further public comment on the developing program.

Here's a copy of the APD's draft policy of body cameras.

As alluded to in that clip, there was a similar forum this past February at which police leadership talked about some of the issues and complications related to body cameras, and members of the public had a chance to express their thoughts. It was an interesting event.

The city of Albany has a $133,305 grant from the federal government to pursue a body camera program -- and the city has to provide a 50/50 in-kind or cash match. APD chief Brendan Cox said at the February meeting the department was planning to roll the cameras out in stages in order to test them.

There's been a lot of interest in body cameras both locally and nationally recently because they're seen as a way of potentially providing more accurate accounts of what happens during police-community interactions. But as that earlier forum made clear, they're just one tool, with their own issues. And they also highlight some of the choices we'll have to make as a culture as we head toward the future that probably involves more pervasive technological surveillance.

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