JUNE 12, 2013 / BY JAMAR HOOKS Join Cop Watch NYC: Help your community stop police misconduct

Discriminatory and abusive policing tactics deployed by the NYPD have become a national scandal. Under Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration, police have logged more than 5 million street stops of mostly Black and Latino residents, very few of whom are ever charged with actual wrongdoing. Our community members are being targeted by the NYPD largely based on the color of our skin. And some of these unjust stops escalate to violence and injuries, or — in some tragic instances — death.

Each of us can do our part to deter police misconduct and violence across the five boroughs. That's why ColorOfChange and our community partners have launched Cop Watch NYC — an innovative new tool that makes it easier to track and publicize police encounters in our neighborhoods. If enough New Yorkers routinely exercise our right to film the police, officers will think twice before engaging in discriminatory and abusive tactics.

Everyday people just like you film the police to fight back against NYPD violence targeting our communities. Last year, criminal charges against Jateik Reed were dropped after video surfaced showing the handcuffed 19-year-old being viciously beaten by four NYPD officers. We know that in stopping to observe and film police encounters, each of us has the power to help hold police accountable when they breach the public trust or abuse their authority.

Thousands of New York City ColorOfChange members have demanded an end to discriminatory policing tactics, and we're organizing our friends and families to turn out at rallies, forums and public hearings challenging the abuses of the NYPD. Cop Watch NYC will support and build out the growing community of New Yorkers who want to be ready to stop and record police misconduct whenever we see it. Take a moment to join Cop Watch NYC, and start documenting police encounters in your community today.