A member of parliament from New South Wales, Australia, visited Johns Hopkins University recently to discuss issues related to police reform and gun safety.
David Shoebridge, who is leading efforts to establish an independent body to monitor police operations and integrity, has called for independent investigations into police officers’ use of force when members of the public are killed or seriously injured. He is also leading efforts to establish new firearms laws and regulations in accordance with Australia’s 1996 National Firearms Agreement, which is part of a nationwide movement to prevent gun violence.
His visit, hosted by Sheldon Greenberg, a professor at the School of Education, and Stephen Teret, a professor in the Bloomberg School of Public Health, included stops in Baltimore, Washington, D.C., New York, Boston and other cities.
“No matter where you live, people want police officers to be distanced from politics, accountable for applying their discretion and authority, and fair to all people,” said Greenberg. “David Shoebridge recognizes that change in police service has to occur on the front line, particularly in how uniformed patrol officers interact with people.”
According to Teret, “We have the technology and everything else we need to advance gun safety. It takes a level of commitment we have not yet achieved to use the tools that we have readily available. David is gaining this commitment in New South Wales, and it will be interesting to watch his progress.”