Obama Federalizes Police Departments in 6 U.S. Cities-Fiction!

Obama Federalizes Police Departments in 6 U.S. Cities – Fiction!

Summary of eRumor: 

The police forces in six U.S. cities have been federalized.

The Truth: 

The federal government has launched a pilot program that will provide training to police departments in six cities, but it’s not true that the departments are being federalized.

The six cities will take part in the National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice pilot program. The program is part of the “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative that President Obama set up in 2014 in an effort to “create opportunities for all young people.”

Attorney General Eric Holder said in March of 2015 that the first six cities to take part in the program would be Birmingham, Alabama; Fort Worth, Texas; Gary, Indiana; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Stockton, California:

“The Department of Justice is committed to using innovative strategies to enhance procedural justice, reduce bias and support reconciliation in communities where trust has been eroded,” said Attorney General Holder.  “By helping to develop programs that serve their own diverse experiences and environments, these selected cities will serve on the leading edge of our effort to confront pressing issues in communities around the country.”

According to the Department of Justice, $4.75 million will be used to develop a plan that enhances procedural justice, reduces racial bias and supports reconciliation in these six cities. A board of advisors from academic, law enforcement, faith-based and civil rights backgrounds will lead the program, the DOJ said.

The stated goal of the program is to provide technical assistance, research and organizational support to help police departments improve community relations. That doesn’t mean that police forces in these six pilot cities are being federalized.