Hold Government Officials Accountable for Unlawful and Immoral Acts Against Civilians

Target: Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House

Goal: Hold police accountable for acts of violence against civilians by ending judicial doctrine of qualified immunity.

Not everyone is seen equally under the law, at least when it comes to law enforcement. Cases against police officers have been dismissed because the officer used pepper spray instead of a taser or because a police dog attacked someone lying down instead of sitting with their hands up. This concept of qualified immunity has let officers off the hook for shooting a child instead of a dog, for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars during a search warrant, and for murdering countless people of color.

Qualified immunity is the judicial ruling that protects government officials from being prosecuted by the law. A government official cannot be held accountable for any action unless there is already a court ruling saying that action was unconstitutional. This means that if a police officer violates one’s civil rights, they can only press charges if there is a past case that the court has deemed unconstitutional in which the police officer violated someone’s rights in the exact same way. Even if the official did something that intentionally violated the law or was morally wrong, the action still falls under qualified immunity. If the victim does manage to overcome the qualified immunity defense, that person then must go through a court case to determine whether or not the offending officer is guilty. 

Qualified immunity has only been around since 1982, and it has led to a culture of police violence that disproportionately affects black and brown people. Before qualified immunity, government officials were protected by a good-faith exemption that protected the officer if they were morally in the right. There is no need for such blindly blanketing protections. Police must be held accountable, and civil rights must be protected. Sign this petition today and ask Speaker Nancy Pelosi to end qualified immunity now. 

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Speaker Pelosi,

Qualified immunity has led to a lack of police accountability within a system that disproportionately targets people of color. Police officers should not have the right to violate citizens’ civil rights with impunity. Qualified immunity has protected cops in countless incidences of violence, theft, and abuse of power and has no qualifiers around the officer’s intentions.

Qualified immunity has only been around since 1982, and in those years, we have seen increased police violence and moral corruption. It is not enough to take down statues and paint ‘Black Lives Matter’ on the streets. Sign a bill ending qualified immunity today.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Salvatore Barbera




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124 Signatures

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