The issue of the liability of police officers and their degree of responsibility for certain actions is the topic that is discussed in the media periodically and causes a great public response. Those illegal actions of the guards of the order that are considered publicly are often explained by the incompetence of police officers and their too frivolous attitude toward the actions committed. At the same time, there are opinions that excessive caution may affect the results of their work negatively since insufficient efforts will be made to fulfill the tasks set. To analyze this issue from the point of view of public initiative, one article from an online journal can be considered to answer the question of how liability should be controlled and what consequences may be caused by police officers’ illegal actions.
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Kaste, M. (2016). To change police practices, a push for liability insurance in Minneapolis. National Public Radio. Web.
This article is devoted to the study of the degree of police liability and the measures that activists living in Minneapolis are eager to implement to monitor the work of law enforcement officers. According to Kaste (2017), “when cities pay damages, individual police officers often aren’t held accountable, which means they’re not likely to change their behavior” (para. 3). This fact indicates that some members of security forces do not understand comprehensively the mission entrusted to them and exceed permissible powers while remaining unpunished. As one of the possible measures to influence police officers, the author considers the assumption of the need for professional liability insurance (Kaste, 2017). The proposal is considered from different points of view, and public activists in Minneapolis put forward different theories regarding the effectiveness of this procedure for law enforcement employees.
At the same time, some government officials have expressed concern that excessive attention to details in the actions of police officers may be fraught with inadequate productivity. “If cops have to start worrying about insurance rates, they’re liable to become overly cautious” (Kaste, 2017, para. 10). Nevertheless, according to activists promoting the implementation of the law on liability insurance, the current control system is imperfect, and errors fixed may help to make police practice more legitimate. As Kaste (2017) notes, the ethics of relations with the population is an essential aspect of the work of law enforcement officials, and in case of serious violations, the punishment should be objective and entail appropriate sanctions. In contrast to previous years when there was no specific explanation regarding the consequences of the inadequate work of police officers, the new bill is likely to help to resolve mutual relations and improve the quality of work.
In case the initiative is adopted and a corresponding number of signatures are collected in support of the new law, the decision will be considered by the City Council. Kaste (2017) remarks that many Minneapolis citizens are interested in promoting new working conditions for the police, and there is a high probability that the bill will be supported. Consequently, a new regime for law enforcement officers will be proposed, which will be an additional incentive for liability compliance.
The actions of the Minneapolis police officers and their liability for certain actions may be reconsidered through the adoption of a new law on professional insurance. In the case of innovation, they will be responsible for all violations allowed in the course of work. Despite the remarks of some government officials that excessive caution can affect the activities of law enforcement agencies negatively, many residents of the city are ready to support the initiative of activists and sign the bill proposed.