House Sends Democratic Bill To End Racial Profiling To Gov. Sununu’s Desk

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Rep. David Meuse, D-Portsmouth

CONCORD – Today, the New Hampshire House voted to send HB 596, a bill to end the practice of racial profiling, to Gov. Chris Sununu’s desk.

Gov. Sununu’s spokesman didn’t immediately respond to a request asking if he will sign it into law.

Following the vote Thursday, Ranking Member of the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee, Rep. Linda Harriott-Gathright, D-Nashua, said: 

“Today, after years of hard work, the New Hampshire House has finally sent Democratic legislation to end racial profiling to the Governor’s desk. I am proud that the New Hampshire House has acknowledged that racial profiling does happen here, and that it must be stopped. I urge Governor Sununu to swiftly sign this bill and join over 30 states nationwide who have similarly outlawed this despicable practice.”  

 Rep. David Meuse, D-Portsmouth, said: HB 596 provides clear guardrails to prevent demographic characteristics that have nothing to do with criminal activity from being used as a factor to constitute reasonable suspicion that an offense has been committed in order to detain an individual or to stop a motor vehicle.

“But to be clear, there is nothing in the bill that prevents a law enforcement officer from using a physical description to apprehend a specific suspect linked to an identified criminal incident or scheme.

 “The passage of this bill sends a clear and unmistakable message to both our law enforcement community and our minority communities that there is no place for racial profiling in New Hampshire—and no place in New Hampshire law enforcement for anyone who engages in it,” Meuse said.

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