Fighting for Statewide Reforms

Remove police accountability from the bargaining process

The CPC is committed to ensuring collective bargaining rights for all people in Washington, including police officers, are protected. However, police unions and their contracts cannot continue to stand in the way of accountability reforms that keep the community safe and are designed to combat centuries of institutional racism.

Police officers are given broad authority to use deadly force and take people's liberty. Those extraordinary powers must be balanced with a strong police accountability system. 

Unfortunately, police unions around the nation have used the collective bargaining process to block these accountability reforms for decades. We have seen that in Seattle as well. In 2017, dozens of community groups, the CPC, and elected officials came together to unanimously pass the landmark Accountability Ordinance.

However, by the end of 2018, many of those reforms, aimed at strengthening Seattle's police disciplinary system, had been rolled back by the adoption of new police contracts. In fact, the police contracts undermined police accountability so much that a federal judge found they had violated the constitutional minimums set by the Consent Decree. 

Like all public employees, police should have the right to collectively bargain for things like wages and good working conditions. However, they should not be able to bargain away accountability.

Other statewide reforms we need: