CPC Releases Police Surveillance Technology Recommendations

Recommendations outline a model to create a consistent, inclusive process of implementing new technologies in Cleveland

For Immediate Release:
May 9, 2022

The Community Police Commission (CPC) Technology Committee today released its Initial Report and Recommendations on Cleveland’s Emerging Police Surveillance Technology.

Committee members, composed of law professors from Cleveland State and Case Western Reserve, representatives from the ACLU and NAACP, Public Defenders and activists, met several times in 2022 to discuss citizens’ concerns about police surveillance technologies. The goal: to determine a recommended course of action to protect privacy and simultaneously improve public safety.

The CPC understands the importance of creating safe neighborhoods and reducing crime and has no position on the technology itself. However, how we select, test and utilize new technologies matters.

“If there are no standards and policies regarding police surveillance and the advancement of tech today, such as facial recognition and use of drones,” says CPC Commissioner and committee chairperson Gordon Friedman, “police tech will take us beyond 1984 and into the Twilight Zone of repression.”

Currently, there is no official decision making process or known police policies regarding the adoption of new surveillance technology in Cleveland.

The CPC’s proposed recommendations are based on that of the City of Oakland, California where, similar to Cleveland, has experienced a complicated relationship between its citizens and its police force. There, the people of Oakland and its police force were able to come together and find a way to manage the adaptation of new technology so that citizens’ privacy rights are protected.

We strongly encourage the City’s leadership to consider the committee’s recommendations which would increase citizen’s trust and confidence in the City of Cleveland and CDP while simultaneously implementing tools to assist in addressing crime.

The CPC’s recommendations can be found on the CPC website at: https://clecpc.org/wp-content/uploads/CPC-Initial-Report-and-Recommendations-on-Clevelands-Emerging-Police-Surveillance-Technology-May-2022.pdf.

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