Florida Senate - 2021                        COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
       Bill No. SB 1970
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              

       The Committee on Criminal Justice (Pizzo) recommended the
    1         Senate Amendment (with title amendment)
    3         Delete everything after the enacting clause
    4  and insert:
    5         Section 1. The Legislature finds that effective policing
    6  requires that the use of chokeholds and neck restraints be
    7  limited; that law enforcement basic recruit training and
    8  retraining include deescalation training; that minimum standards
    9  of instruction be developed relating to deescalation techniques,
   10  procedural justice, implicit bias, and the duty of an officer to
   11  intervene if another officer uses excessive or unnecessary
   12  force; that the state law enforcement accreditation program
   13  address these matters as well as mental health and wellness
   14  resources and support available for law enforcement officers;
   15  and that written policies incorporate an affirmative duty to use
   16  deescalation techniques whenever possible. The Legislature
   17  further finds and declares that this act fulfills an important
   18  state interest in protecting the safety of both law enforcement
   19  officers and the public by ensuring law enforcement officers
   20  receive sufficient and similar training to prevent unnecessary
   21  or excessive use of force and to develop skills to enhance
   22  understanding of and communication with the communities they
   23  serve.
   24         Section 2. Subsections (23) through (27) are added to
   25  section 943.10, Florida Statutes, to read:
   26         943.10 Definitions; ss. 943.085-943.255.—The following
   27  words and phrases as used in ss. 943.085-943.255 are defined as
   28  follows:
   29         (23) “Deescalation technique” means a method or methods for
   30  assessing and managing a situation in order to resolve it with
   31  the least response to resistance which is safe and practicable
   32  by a law enforcement officer.
   33         (24) “Implicit bias training” means a program designed to
   34  go beyond producing fair and impartial enforcement of the law by
   35  bringing awareness to or increasing awareness of, and improving
   36  response strategies to, unconscious bias towards diverse
   37  communities. Such training should allow law enforcement to serve
   38  the community with a deeper understanding of the diversities
   39  within the community, thereby mitigating community tension and
   40  improving police-community relations.
   41         (25) “Intervene” means to stop the use of excessive or
   42  unnecessary force.
   43         (26) “Procedural justice training” means a system of law
   44  enforcement that prioritizes obtaining citizen compliance with
   45  law enforcement direction through fair and respectful two-way
   46  communication and, where possible and safe, provides explanation
   47  of the rationale behind directions given by law enforcement
   48  officers to build trust. This training allows for both community
   49  and police to be treated with respect and dignity, thereby
   50  cultivating stronger police-community relations.
   51         (27) “Reaction gap” means the minimum amount of distance
   52  necessary to ensure that a law enforcement officer will have
   53  time to be able to react appropriately to a potential threat.
   54         Section 3. Present subsection (17) of section 943.12,
   55  Florida Statutes, is redesignated as subsection (18), and a new
   56  subsection (17) and subsection (19) are added to that section,
   57  to read:
   58         943.12 Powers, duties, and functions of the commission.—The
   59  commission shall:
   60         (17) Adopt rules prohibiting any law enforcement officer,
   61  correctional officer, or correctional probation officer from
   62  using any technique that requires the application of pressure to
   63  the neck, throat, esophagus, trachea, or carotid arteries
   64  alongside the trachea. The use of such a technique by a law
   65  enforcement officer, correctional officer, or correctional
   66  probation officer is prohibited unless deadly force is
   67  authorized under the law. The commission shall adopt rules
   68  requiring employing agencies to report to the commission any use
   69  of such technique by a law enforcement officer, correctional
   70  officer, or correctional probation officer employed by that
   71  agency. The commission shall cause to be investigated any law
   72  enforcement officer, correctional officer, or correctional
   73  probation officer who uses such a technique in violation of this
   74  subsection, and shall set disciplinary guidelines and penalties
   75  prescribed in rules applicable to such violation.
   76         (19) Provide data to the National Decertification Index on
   77  final commission orders regarding revocation or relinquishment
   78  of certification of law enforcement officers, correctional
   79  officers, and correctional probation officers.
   80         Section 4. Section 943.121, Florida Statutes, is created to
   81  read:
   82         943.121 Commission standards for instruction of officers in
   83  certain subjects; guidance; written policies.—
   84         (1) The commission shall establish and maintain standards
   85  for instruction of officers in the subjects of deescalation
   86  techniques, procedural justice training, implicit bias training,
   87  and the duty to intervene if another officer uses excessive or
   88  unnecessary force in order to build upon and improve police
   89  community relations.
   90         (2) The minimum standards for deescalation training must
   91  include all of the following:
   92         (a) Training on verbal and physical tactics that would help
   93  avoid a physical response to resistance with an emphasis on
   94  communication, negotiation, deescalation techniques, creating
   95  and maintaining a reaction gap, and obtaining the time needed to
   96  resolve the incident safely for each individual involved.
   97         (b) Training officers simultaneously and in teams on
   98  deescalation and appropriate responses to resistance to improve
   99  group dynamics and diminish excessive responses to resistance
  100  while managing critical incidents.
  101         (c) Training that intentional chokeholds must never be
  102  used, except in deadly force situations.
  103         (d) Training on the principles of using distance, cover,
  104  and time when approaching and managing critical incidents, and
  105  the elimination of other techniques in favor of using distance
  106  and cover to create and sustain a reaction gap.
  107         (e) Training on the use of the lowest response to
  108  resistance which is a possible and safe response to an
  109  identified threat.
  110         (f) Training on the reevaluation of an identified threat as
  111  the management of the critical incident progresses.
  112         (g) Training on procedural justice training.
  113         (h) Training on crisis intervention strategies to
  114  appropriately identify and respond to individuals suffering from
  115  physical or mental disabilities, mental health issues, or
  116  substance abuse issues with an emphasis on deescalation
  117  techniques and promoting effective communication with such
  118  individuals.
  119         (i) Training on techniques that provide all officers with
  120  awareness and recognition of an individual’s physical and mental
  121  disabilities, mental health issues, and substance abuse issues
  122  with an emphasis on communication strategies.
  123         (j) Training on other evidence-based approaches found to be
  124  appropriate by the commission which enhance deescalation
  125  techniques and skills.
  126         (k) Training on implicit bias.
  127         (3) Not later than November 30, 2022, the commission shall
  128  provide written guidance to law enforcement agencies in this
  129  state which employ law enforcement officers with regard to
  130  compliance with minimum standards under subsection (2).
  131         (4) The commission shall create and publish on its website
  132  a model written policy in accordance with subsection (2).
  133         (5) Not later than January 1, 2023, each law enforcement
  134  agency in this state shall adopt a written policy stating that
  135  each of the law enforcement officers in its employ has an
  136  affirmative duty to use deescalation techniques in his or her
  137  interactions with citizens wherever possible. A law enforcement
  138  agency may fulfill its duty under this subsection by adopting
  139  the commission’s model written policy.
  140         (6) The commission shall collect data regarding the
  141  implementation of training programs under this section and shall
  142  provide by July 1 of each year an annual report to the President
  143  of the Senate, the Senate Minority Leader, the Speaker of the
  144  House of Representatives, and the House Minority Leader
  145  describing that data.
  146         Section 5. Section 943.125, Florida Statutes, is amended to
  147  read:
  148         943.125 Accreditation of state and local law enforcement
  149  agencies, correctional facilities, public agency offices of
  150  inspectors general, and certain pretrial diversion programs;
  151  intent.—
  152         (1) It is the intent of the Legislature that law
  153  enforcement agencies, correctional facilities, public agency
  154  offices of inspectors general, and those agencies offering
  155  pretrial diversion programs within offices of the state
  156  attorneys, county government, or sheriff’s offices in the state
  157  be upgraded and strengthened through the adoption of meaningful
  158  standards of operation for those agencies and their functions.
  159         (2) It is the further intent of the Legislature that these
  160  agencies voluntarily adopt standards designed to promote
  161  enhanced professionalism:
  162         (a) For law enforcement, to maximize the capability of law
  163  enforcement agencies to enforce the law and prevent and control
  164  criminal activities.
  165         (b) For correctional facilities, to maintain best practices
  166  for the care, custody, and control of inmates.
  167         (c) Within public agency offices of inspector general, to
  168  promote more effective scrutiny of public agency operations and
  169  greater accountability of those serving in those agencies.
  170         (d) In the operation and management of pretrial diversion
  171  programs offered by and through the state attorney’s offices,
  172  county government, or sheriff’s offices.
  173         (3) The Legislature also intends to encourage the
  174  continuation of a voluntary state accreditation program to
  175  facilitate the enhanced professionalism identified in subsection
  176  (2). Other than the staff support by the department as
  177  authorized in subsection (5), the accreditation program must be
  178  independent of any law enforcement agency, the Department of
  179  Corrections, the Florida Sheriffs Association, or the Florida
  180  Police Chiefs Association.
  181         (4) The law enforcement accreditation program must address,
  182  at a minimum, all of the following aspects of law enforcement:
  183         (a) Vehicle pursuits.
  184         (b) Seizure and forfeiture of contraband articles.
  185         (c) Recording and processing citizens’ complaints.
  186         (d) Response to resistance Use of force.
  187         (e)Traffic stops.
  188         (f) Handling natural and manmade disasters.
  189         (g) Special operations.
  190         (h) Prisoner transfer.
  191         (i) Collection and preservation of evidence.
  192         (j) Recruitment and selection.
  193         (k) Officer training.
  194         (l) Performance evaluations.
  195         (m) Law enforcement disciplinary procedures and rights.
  196         (n) Use of criminal investigative funds.
  197         (o) Deescalation techniques.
  198         (p) Implicit bias training.
  199         (q) Procedural justice training.
  200         (r) Mental health and wellness resources and support
  201  available for law enforcement officers, including any peer
  202  support teams and sworn or unsworn chaplaincy programs.
  203         (s) The duty to intervene if another officer uses excessive
  204  or unnecessary force.
  205         (5) Subject to available funding, the department shall
  206  employ and assign adequate support staff to the Commission for
  207  Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation, Inc., and the Florida
  208  Corrections Accreditation Commission, Inc., in support of the
  209  accreditation programs established in this section.
  210         (6) Accreditation standards related to law enforcement and
  211  inspectors general used by the accreditation programs
  212  established in this section shall be determined by the
  213  Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation, Inc.
  214  Accreditation standards related to corrections functions and
  215  pretrial diversion programs shall be determined by the Florida
  216  Corrections Accreditation Commission, Inc.
  217         Section 6. Section 943.1715, Florida Statutes, is amended
  218  to read:
  219         943.1715 Basic skills training relating to diverse
  220  populations and deescalation training.—The commission shall
  221  establish and maintain standards for instruction of officers in
  222  the subject of interpersonal skills relating to diverse
  223  populations, with an emphasis on the awareness of cultural
  224  differences. Every basic skills course required in order for
  225  officers to obtain initial certification must include training
  226  in interpersonal skills with diverse populations. The commission
  227  shall also require that every basic skills course include in the
  228  curriculum at least 40 hours of deescalation training.
  229         Section 7. Section 943.1716, Florida Statutes, is amended
  230  to read:
  231         943.1716 Continued employment training relating to diverse
  232  populations and deescalation training.—The commission shall by
  233  rule require that each officer receive, as part of the 40 hours
  234  of required instruction for continued employment or appointment
  235  as an officer, instruction in the subject of interpersonal
  236  skills relating to diverse populations, with an emphasis on the
  237  awareness of cultural differences. The commission shall also
  238  require by rule that every officer receive at least 16 hours of
  239  deescalation training, in addition to the 40 hours of required
  240  instruction for continued employment or appointment as an
  241  officer.
  242         Section 8. This act shall take effect July 1, 2022.
  245  ================= T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T ================
  246  And the title is amended as follows:
  247         Delete everything before the enacting clause
  248  and insert:
  249                        A bill to be entitled                      
  250         An act relating to law enforcement reform; providing a
  251         declaration of important state interest; amending s.
  252         943.10, F.S.; defining terms; amending s. 943.12,
  253         F.S.; requiring the Criminal Justice Standards and
  254         Training Commission to adopt rules prohibiting law
  255         enforcement officers, correctional officers, or
  256         correctional probation officers from using specified
  257         techniques; providing an exception; requiring the
  258         commission to adopt rules requiring employing agencies
  259         to report information related to the use of such
  260         techniques; requiring that the commission review
  261         certain officers who use the prohibited techniques;
  262         requiring the commission to provide specified data
  263         regarding final commission orders to the National
  264         Decertification Index; creating s. 943.121, F.S.;
  265         requiring the commission to establish and maintain
  266         standards for the instruction of officers in specified
  267         subjects in order to build upon and improve police
  268         community relations; providing minimum required
  269         standards for deescalation training; requiring that by
  270         a specified date the commission provide certain
  271         guidance to law enforcement agencies; requiring the
  272         commission to create and publish on its website a
  273         model written policy; requiring that by a specified
  274         date each law enforcement agency adopt a certain
  275         policy; requiring the commission to collect certain
  276         data and submit an annual report; amending s. 943.125,
  277         F.S.; revising the minimum aspects of law enforcement
  278         that the law enforcement accreditation program must
  279         address; amending s. 943.1715, F.S.; requiring every
  280         basic skills course required for officers to obtain
  281         initial certification to include a minimum number of
  282         hours of deescalation training; amending s. 943.1716,
  283         F.S.; requiring the commission to adopt rules
  284         requiring that every officer receive a minimum number
  285         of hours of deescalation training; providing an
  286         effective date.