Fraternal Order of Police


Tell Congress to OPPOSE any bill or provision that would eliminate Qualified Immunity

In early March, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1280, the “George Floyd Justice in Policing Act,” which will now proceed to the Senate for consideration. The legislation, which is virtually identical to the bill which stalled in the Senate last year, was not considered in any committee and was instead moved directly to the House floor for a vote.

The Fraternal Order of Police was disappointed that there was no opportunity for input from rank-and-file law enforcement officers on the legislation because there are aspects of the bill that the FOP could potentially support.  However, without a dialogue and a chance for input, especially on issues like qualified immunity and statutory proposals to alter the Graham v. Connor standard on “objective reasonableness,” we cannot support this legislation.

In particular, the FOP and virtually every other law enforcement organization in the United States strongly oppose any bill or provision which would eliminate the doctrine of qualified immunity as is proposed in H.R. 1280.

We are asking all FOP members to contact both of their Senators and urge them in the strongest possible terms to oppose any bill or provision that would eliminate the established doctrine on qualified immunity.

Please sign now!

1 comment on “Tell Congress to OPPOSE Eliminating Qualified Immunity

  1. The “legal terminology” can be confusing to most of us. That is something “Defund” Law Enforcement individuals and groups will use regularly. I will do my best to insure we have a full understanding.

    Intent is an awareness that is recognized in the courts for every single crime. Except for police. Police were abused by politicians in wrongful and political dismissal or arrest in just doing their jobs. There are rarely “innocent” personas contacted in policing where the contact becomes a series of the alias of force. There are times where someone may be completely unrelated to any investigation but rather than answer the few inquiries to help in an investigation, the otherwise innocent become aggressive toward the police, alluding to participation of the crime under investigation or of another the officer is not aware of yet. But the officer is bound to protect the public and when confronted with aggression, the officer must determine how to keep an aggressive person from turning to a truly innocent nonparticipant and injuring or killing them in the presence of the officer, who should have taken control of the aggressor before anyone gets hurt.
    Thousands of scenarios, but the overwhelming majority of police contact is invited by the actions of the person or the crimes of the vicinity.
    “Qualified” is the key word. There is NEVER a time when the police has to use force where it is not immediately scrutinized. The officer is investigated and must justify that use of force at any level. If the use of force is not justified, the officer is disciplined by administrative authority, the prosecutors office, the FBI, and is then liable in civil suits often championed by the ACLU.
    Police officers have been arrested and convicted of crimes while on duty. Some are in prisons across the country right now. Police agencies recognize the authority given them from the society they serve. They are managed by the civilians who the public elected. If a police officer becomes a criminal, that means there is intentional harm to unethical actions, then the police are harder on that person than any other civilian who commits similar crimes. That’s because the person committed these actions in a position of PUBLIC TRUST.
    Officers deal with people of little integrity regularly. It’s common to have false accusation against the officer in an attempt by the offender to turn attention from their crimes and cause the courts, police administration, and the public to discredit the officer, thereby increasing the chances of getting away with their crimes.
    A peace officer will always be bound to engage and if they flee from confrontation, they should also be fired and never allowed to be in that vocation again anywhere in the world.
    If the officer is able to articulate the play by play of what led to the gradual increase of meeting the force necessary to effect the arrest, then as long as the officer has a REASONABLE PERCEPTION of the dangers and uses the correct level of graduates force continuum, then the officer will be protected from frivolous law suits. This “qualifies” the officer for a defense from the civilian government they serve instead of having to pay for their own defense out of their family income. Which is quickly depleted at junior salaries. The “immunity” is that the complainant cannot sue the officer personally and must direct the suit towards the government. And again, that only applies when the government has vetted the actions of the officer and agrees that the force was not excessive and was necessary based on the perceptions of the officer and the victims directly involved with the offender. Again, the offender can still file suits, have the ACLU & the FBI investigate the incident for Civil Rights Violations. But if the end results remain that the officer did their duties with the tools and training available by the civilian government who authorizes the training, then the Qualified Immunity only protects the officers personal assets.

Leave a Reply