June 21, 2022
What is the new Baltimore County Police Accountability Board (PAB)?
Why should you consider serving as a member of the PAB? And if not you, please pass the suggestion along.
Dear Friends and Indivisibles.
In 2021, the Maryland General Assembly passed HB 670 mandating that local county governments convene Police Accountability Boards (PAB) by July 1, 2022 to provide an oversight role for the public into their local police departments by reviewing specific complaints arising from acts of misconduct and abuse by local officers .
The creation of a PAB in Baltimore County will mark the end of the era when “police are allowed to police themselves”. The newly established PAB will finally provide us, residents of Baltimore County, with a mandated window into the police department’s Internal Affairs investigations into officer misconduct and disciplinary outcomes.
Until now, all complaints regarding Baltimore County police interactions with the public have been handled internally and confidentially within local law enforcement entities. We as residents and taxpayers of Baltimore County, including those who have been victims of egregious police misconduct, have never before had the right or opportunity to review how internal police department investigations have been conducted or what, if any, disciplinary actions were taken as a result: the PAB lifts that veil.
The Baltimore County Coalition for Police Accountability (BCCPA) is committed to ensuring that PAB is composed of community members who are committed to the intent of this landmark state legislation: making sure that the public plays a role in understanding how police misconduct complaints are handled by their local police department.
The BCCPA is encouraging outstanding individuals, like you, to apply for a seat at this important table! You’ll find more information below. Let me know if you have any questions about the PAB and this new opportunity to serve Baltimore County.
How to Apply for Membership on the Baltimore County Police Accountability Board
Baltimore County has begun its process to establish a Police Accountability Board (PAB), as required by HB0670, the Maryland Police Accountability Act of 2021. Information about the Baltimore County PAB, including the duties of the PAB, can be found on the BaltCo PAB website.
The County Executive will make appointments to the PAB per County Council Bill 24-22, passed June 6, 2022. Note: An active police officer may not be a member, and to the extent practicable, the membership must reflect the racial, gender and cultural diversity of the County.
If you are interested in serving on the PAB, please submit an online application. Lower down on the BaltCo PAB website, you will find the hyperlink to submit an online application.
This link lands on the County’s listing, in alphabetical order, of all 54 Boards and Commissions.
Scroll down to and click on “Police Accountability Board” to reveal a dropdown menu with links back to the PAB webpage and to the PAB email address, PAB@baltimorecountymd.gov.
To apply to be a member of the PAB, submit a letter of interest to PAB@baltimorecountymd.gov that includes relevant work and life experiences. Remember that the membership of the Police Accountability Board is intended to reflect the racial, gender and cultural diversity of Baltimore County.
Please: if you are not interested in applying to be on the PAB, you might know someone who would be a good candidate. I hope you will pass this along.