Written Testimony of

Pamela Selders

Founder of CT Black Women

Before The Judiciary Committee Listening Session

of Proposed Legislation on Police Accountability

July 17, 2020

Good Morning State Senator Winfield and State Representative Stafstrom and members of the Judiciary Committee. My name is Pamela Selders, Founder of CT Black Women, a group of Black women of conscience working together in supporting and building ourselves and our community through activism, advocacy, education and creativity and Co-Founder of Moral Monday CT, a statewide group of persons of faith and conscious doing our work at the intersection of social justice and the Movement for Black Lives.

I write to you in support of this bill particularly regarding Sections 24-28, Increased Citizen Criminal Liability “The Amy Cooper Section.  For as long as is the history of policing in this country is how long police have been used through false accusations and reports as weapons against Black Americans like me, my husband, my family and my community for no other reason than the color of our skin.

Being Black is not a crime. Yet, all too often these baseless reports criminalize us. We are treated maliciously as if we were the enemy combatant with militarized police delivering to us acts of terror that brutalizes, dehumanizes and ending in catastrophe. 

We are then left to pick up the pieces of our lives with little resource and recourse to re-address the many injustices beginning with the false 911 call.  We need change now. To this end, we also support Section 30, The Duty to Intervene, Section 21 & 22, Stop and Frisk, Section 33-37 around Independent Investigation and Prosecution, Section 41, Qualified Immunity, Section 23, The Role and Work of The Division of Criminal Justice and the Chief Court Administrator, Section 40, Divestment in the 1033 Program, and Section 31 & 32, Extended Professional Penalty.

Thank you again for hearing this today.

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