Assemblymember Holden’s Legislation to Increase Peace Officer Hate Crimes Training Passes Public Safety Committee

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Sacramento, CA - Assemblymember Chris Holden’s legislation to require periodic hate crime training for peace officers, Assembly Bill 837, passed the Assembly Public Safety Committee today.

“The misrepresentation of hate crimes in California makes it harder to protect targeted groups,” said Assemblymember Chris Holden. “Accurate statistics of hate crimes is a vital step in addressing the problem and shaping policy.”

Assembly Bill 837 specifically requires each local law enforcement agency to mandate peace officers to attend periodic training in the investigation of hate crimes. Under the proposal, each agency may make the training culturally relevant to the community served by that agency.

While current law already requires the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training to develop guidelines for instructing and training law enforcement officers addressing hate crimes, peace offers are only required to complete one training.

A 2017 California State Auditor Report Hate Crimes in California, Law Enforcement Has Not Adequately Identified, Reported, or Responded to Hate Crimes concluded that “some law enforcement agencies have not provided refresher hate crime training that contains critical procedures for identifying hate crimes.”

“My goal with this legislation is to ensure peace officers have the tools necessary to protect the most vulnerable and targeted communities,” said Holden.