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TSU’s Center for Justice Research creates action brief banning chokeholds

HOUSTON – On Sunday, Texas Southern University gave KPRC a preview on a series of action briefs taking on police reform. This comes nearly six months since the death of Houston native George Floyd.

The school’s Center for Justice Research will release a report on Monday that will provide tools to local state and national legislators. It will ensure that they understand that there is evidence out there to begin banning chokeholds across the country.

“When you look at the impact of chokeholds you have individuals who are dying because of that,” Dr. Howard Henderson said.

Dr. Howard Henderson is the Director for The Justice Research at Texas Southern University. He spoke about the death of George Floyd.

“What we saw was that an individual was murdered by a police officer and you also saw other officers around not intervening in that issue,” he said.

George Floyd’s death along with the deaths Eric Garner and many others have sparked changes at local, state and federal levels to ban the use of chokeholds.

“All around the country you find that over 70 percent of the country’s largest cities have begun to put policies in place to ban chokeholds,” Dr. Henderson said.

Since May, Dr. Henderson and others across the country have been working to develop policies to eradicate the problem.

It’s the first in a series of 8 action briefs focused on providing policy makers the tools they need to reform policing in this country.

“For the most part it’s making sure that the solutions to policing need to come from the black community when you look around the country everyone is saying they know what the answer is but they’re not asking the black community what the solutions are you need to ask the people who are victims of the system what the solutions are and I think we will be in a better place,” he said.

Dr. Henderson says the next action brief will focus on the duty to intervene. The goal is to make sure officers understand the need to intervene when they witness fellow officers involved in misconduct.