A lawsuit says the Police Department engaged in a widespread pattern of racial discrimination that occurred even while the Justice Department was investigating it for bias.
From today’s New York Times, this case–both a civil rights complaint and a class action one. It would seem to be acutely timely, given what’s being going on around the country, but of course a case like this takes a lot of time to prepare.
The story by Times reporter Liz Robbins begins:
Latinos in Suffolk County filed a class-action lawsuit on Wednesday in federal court, accusing the Police Department of engaging in a widespread pattern of racial discrimination, harassment and cover-ups that occurred even while the Justice Department was investigating it for bias, the complaint said.
The accusations come amid a national climate of outrage over police practices, and on Long Island there is a sense among the swelling numbers of Latino immigrants that hate crimes and police indifference are something to be feared, if not expected.
“We are looking to see that the broken system is restored for every one of us and our families, so that we can once again walk and drive on Suffolk County streets and not be worried that we would be stopped, if for the only reason for the color of our skin,” said Irma Solis, a community organizer with Make the Road New York’s advocacy group on Long Island.
“On another level,” she added, “hopefully we’ll be able to create some change to allow for greater police accountability.”