Council 4 Police Unions Speak Out on HB 6004

Several members of Council 4 affiliated police unions shared their concerns and opposition to many of the components of HB 6004, the so-called police accountability bill raised for hearing by the General Assembly's Judiciary Committee on July 27.

East Windsor Police Sgt. Jeffrey Reimer, who chairs Council 4's Public Safety Committee, provided detailed testimony that outlined our unions' collective concerns, including:

  • Language allowing POST to suspend an officer from their job for up to 45 days, in addition to later decertifying officers for such things as “undermining public confidence in police work.”
  • Mandating mental health tests that POST can then use to take “personnel actions.”
  • Allowing for the waiving of qualified immunity for civil rights violations and could lead to mandating that every police officer must personally obtain liability insurance.
  • Changing the Graham shooting standard from being a “what would a reasonable officer do” to a “justifiable” standard. Also it would add that an officer’s use of force actions would be have to be “objectively reasonable.”
  • Giving subpoena power to civilian review boards.
  • Removing police offices from traffic construction sites.

Click here to read Sgt. Reimer's testimony.

Sgt. Anna Torello, president of the Wilton Police Union, was among the many AFSCME-represented police officers who provided testimony that pushed back against the unfair narrative about police:

"I came into this profession to bring safety and protection to all the people in my community, and never once have I heard of any of my fellow officers deny assistance to anybody in need because of skin color, gender, religion, or whatever else might be taken as an excuse for accusations of discriminatory practices," she said.

Click here to read Sgt. Tornello's testimony.

In addition, police officers from Bridgeport, Norwalk, Middletown, New London and other Council 4-represented departments provided testimony about the dangers of overstepping with the accountability bill, which subsequently cleared the House and Senate, and was signed into law by Gov. Lamont on July 31.

Click here for the full text of Public Act 20-1.

Click here to read the Office of Legislative Research analysis of HB 6004.