Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Judge Wants Greater Restrictions In Settlement of NYPD Muslim Surveillance Suit

As previously reported, in January the parties to a long-running class action challenging practices of the New York Police Department in surveillance Muslims reached a settlement agreement offering greater protections.  However, in Handschu v. Police Department of the City of New York, (SD NY, Oct. 28, 2016), the court rejected the proposed settlement, insisting on three additional restrictions.  As discussed in an ACLU press release on the decision:
The judge ... called for alterations that would:
Clarify the authority of an individual outside the NYPD (a civilian representative) to ensure the NYPD’s compliance with the “Handschu Guidelines” — which govern NYPD surveillance of political and religious activity — even beyond the terms of the reforms proposed by the settlement.
Require that the civilian representative established by the settlement report periodically to the court on the NYPD’s compliance. 
Require the mayor to seek court approval before abolishing the position of civilian representative.
New York Times reports on the decision.