Rhode Island officials announce police body-worn camera program

Officials say there are nearly 1,700 police officers across the state.

PROVIDENCE, R.I (WLNE) – For the first time in its history, there’s a program in Rhode Island that will provide funding to give body-worn cameras to every police officer in the state.

This program was announced Wednesday at the State House, by Governor Dan McKee, Attorney General Neronha, along with the Rhode Island State Police and other state and local leaders.

Officials say over the next 12 to 18 months, the state will be able to equip approximately 1,700 of Rhode Island’s uniformed officers and supervisors.

In addition to increasing accountability and transparency, state and local leaders are also hoping this will help strengthen the relationship between the community and police officers; especially after a tumultuous past year.

“This is the time if there is ever a time to connect our community with our policing this is the time to do it,” Governor Dan McKee said on Wednesday.

This program will also help to develop statewide policies for departments to adapt to ensure the effectiveness of the cameras.

The funding for this program will be included in the state budget, according to the Governor’s Office. Around $3 million per year for the next 5 years will be necessary to purchase the cameras and provide funds for maintenance.

The House Finance Committee will meet Thursday night to further discuss details of the budgeting.

©WLNE-TV/ABC6 2021

Categories: News, Rhode Island