Deadline Looms for Boston Police Officers Volunteering for Body Cameras | NECN


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Deadline Looms for Boston Police Officers Volunteering for Body Cameras



    (Published Monday, Aug. 15, 2016)

    Boston Police are scheduled to launch a body camera pilot program in September, but officers don't want to participate.

    Beginning the week of Sept. 1, 100 officers are scheduled to begin wearing the cameras for a six month trial period. Boston Police Commissioner Bill Evans had said the program would be voluntary, but as of Monday, the department had no volunteers.

    "We're moving forward. They'll have to wear them," said Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.

    Despite a $500 incentive offered to any officer who signs up, Walsh acknowledged there has been hesitation within the department. However, that's not going to stop the city from implementing the plan.

    "I think the reluctance is the uncertainty of change, change across the board," Walsh said. "If officers don't step up to do it and we don't get a sufficient amount of officers to do it, we're going to put them on officers."

    When necn reached out to the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association (BPPA), the union that had previously supported the plan, union leaders said they believe the lack of volunteers is due to police safety concerns.

    "It may be that the problem with officers actually volunteering occurred because of timing, the City finally decided to agree to this program within a week of eight Police Officers being murdered in two separate cities and meanwhile our members were screaming for protection which was falling on deaf ears," wrote the union's president, Patrick Rose.

    Despite the push-back, Walsh said they plan to launch on schedule.

    "We have a process," Walsh said, "There will be a directive."

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