Experts: Powerful unions are blocking police reform

(USA TODAY) Demonstrators across the country demanding justice for George Floyd might be wise to aim their wrath at a rare target: police unions.

Law enforcement insiders and criminology experts point to such organizations as the biggest reason police practices have hardly changed despite the outrage over killings of unarmed black men over the years. They also say it will take a pitched battle to effect change after Floyd’s death May 25 in Minneapolis police custody.

“Police unions are the major stumbling block against law enforcement reform,’’ said Kalfani Ture, a former police officer in Georgia who now teaches criminal justice at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut. “The police union, in fact, institutionalizes the culture of maybe being a bad cop because it (represents) the status quo.”

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