Nassau PBA, County Reach Deal on Body Cameras

June 14, 2021
News 12

Nassau police officers could be wearing body cameras come this fall.

Nassau County Police Benevolent Association President James McDermott confirmed to News 12 that the county has reached an agreement with the PBA for the initiative.

The agreement would give officers $3,000 a year to wear them.

"Nassau County Police Officers put their lives on the line each and every day for the safety of our residents and communities," McDermott said in a statement provided to News 12. "Body cameras are both an added responsibility and protection for our Officers, and Police Officers support the use of advancing technology that enhances protections for Police and the public alike."

It is estimated that the contract will cost county taxpayers $8 million annually.

County Executive Laura Curran announced that that Nassau purchased over 2,000 body cameras in May. She told Newsday that this is an important first step that will promote greater transparency and accountability.

Civil rights attorney Fred Brewington, however, says body cams are a first step but more needs to be done.

“Body cameras are just something that helps us move along with regard to the potential for accountability,” Brewington says.

Following the murder of George Floyd last year, Gov. Andrew Cuomo required municipalities to update their policies or risk losing state funding. Both Nassau and Suffolk counties incorporated police body cameras as part of their reform plans.

The Nassau Interim Finance Authority and the Nassau County Legislature must also approve the measure. A legislative committee is scheduled to vote on the issue on Monday.