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Police reform blueprint released by Wisconsin group

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Madison (WQOW) - A state law enforcement group has released a list of suggested guidelines for police reform in Wisconsin following the regional officer-involved death of George Floyd and shooting of Jacob Blake.

The Wisconsin Professional Police Association (WPPA), which represents more than 300 law enforcement organizations, has created what it has called a "Blueprint for Change."

The plan is made up of four categories: training and standards, oversight and accountability, community engagement and innovation and officer wellness.

The association's executive director, Jim Palmer, said the initiative began after the death of Floyd, and the plan was finalized after months of outreach to communities, lawmakers and law enforcement across the state.

"We've seen the public discourse that surrounds policing become more intense and volatile and polarized and we don't think that's a dynamic that serves the public or law enforcement very well," Palmer said. "So, for that reason, we really need to be able to come together as a people and collectively, law enforcement and its critics, in a way to recognize that we can support the cause for social justice, but at the same time we also have to acknowledge the difficult and dangerous jobs that officers do. So, any reforms that we might enact, we have to be mindful that they're not impacting public safety."

Some of those reform suggestions are a uniform statewide policy on the use of force, annual "no-knock" warrant tracking reports sent to the DOJ and "riot penalties" which are criminal penalties for anyone who intentionally participates in public violence and destruction.

Palmer said going forward, officials in the WPPA will continue building support for this blueprint through ongoing engagement with lawmakers and communities.

McKenna Alexander

McKenna Alexander is the weekend anchor and a multimedia journalist for News 18. She started in June 2019. She was born in San Francisco, but spent the majority of her life growing up in Dallas.

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