‘Right to Know Act’ Goes Into Effect in City, Increasing Transparency in Police Matters

The City of Poughkeepsie’s “Right to Know Act” has gone into effect. It requires city officers to identify themselves when having encounters with the public, including giving their rank, along with a business card with their identification and contact information for the department.

The person can use this information to obtain a written record of any interaction with the officer that doesn’t end in an arrest, summons or ticket. The Common Council unanimously approved the act in July of this year. Mayor Rob Rolison subsequently signed the legislation into law, which is designed to increase transparency in police practices — and to build trust between police officers and members of the public.

Implementation of the “The Right to Know Act” is the latest in a string on reforms and initiatives connected to the policing, including the city investing in body cameras and supportive equipment for the department. The cameras provide more transparency about how officers operate in the field – and about the situations to which they respond.

Download: Local Law 20-02 – City Officers and Employees in Coordination with the Right to Know Act (.pdf)