McClinton helps House pass police reform legislation unanimously, reminds colleagues this is a critical first step in bringing justice for all

State Rep. Joanna McClinton is commending her House colleagues for joining her today in unanimously passing critical police reform bills to help ensure accountability and transparency in law enforcement across the commonwealth. 

"I'm proud to have been part of history, as all members from both sides of the political aisle came together, did the people's work and moved Pennsylvania forward," said McClinton, D-Phila./Delaware. "We have a responsibility to provide justice to all, but too many times, justice and fairness have fallen short for Black and Brown folks, particularly as it deals with policing. Today, we put our communities of color first by using our power as legislators to push to implement change." 

The House passed:

  • H.B. 1841 – Would require thorough background checks prior to the hiring of a police officer, as well as require the establishment and upkeep of a confidential database which will contain information about past criminal convictions/employment separations of police officers. Hiring departments would be expected to query this database prior to hiring a certified officer.
  • H.B. 1910 – Would require that police officers be trained on racial, ethnic, and economic diversity; implicit bias; recognizing and reporting child abuse; and annual training on the appropriate use of force. The bill also would increase access to officers’ mental health evaluations.

"This is the first of many bold steps we must take to end systemic racism," explained McClinton. "It's critical that we work with stakeholders, members of law enforcement and, most importantly, members of our communities who are crying out across this nation demanding change finally," explained McClinton. 

These bills now move to the state Senate.