Governor Shapiro Establishes CLEAR Commission for Enhanced Law Enforcement Accountability

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PENNSYLVANIA — On Thursday, Governor Josh Shapiro signed Executive Order 2023-21, establishing the Pennsylvania Citizen Law Enforcement Advisory and Review (CLEAR) Commission within the Office of State Inspector General (OSIG). This groundbreaking move is a significant step towards increasing transparency and accountability within law enforcement across the state.

The CLEAR Commission’s mandate will be to conduct an annual review of the Commonwealth’s policing practices. It will deliver recommendations for improvements to police agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction. These include the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP), DGS Capitol Police, DOC Law Enforcement Sub-units, DCNR Park Rangers, OSIG Bureau of Fraud Prevention and Prosecution, and PDA Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement.

The Commission comprises a diverse group of commissioners with extensive experience in law enforcement, mental health, and community advocacy from all corners of the state. Jaimie Hicks will serve as the Executive Director of the CLEAR Commission.

In a commitment to transparency, the Commission will prepare an annual report, which will be publicly available online. The Commission will also hold quarterly meetings, which will be open to the public. To equip them adequately for their task, commissioners will receive 40 hours of training on topics such as use of force, bias-based policing, internal affairs processes, and constitutional law before they begin reviewing investigations.

Governor Josh Shapiro expressed his optimism about the impact of the CLEAR Commission. “Every Pennsylvanian deserves to be safe and feel safe in their communities – the CLEAR Commission will help ensure Pennsylvanians can have the utmost faith in the law enforcement officers serving and protecting them every day,” he said. “Officers who engage in misconduct erode trust in law enforcement and make it harder for our communities to be and feel safe.”

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State Inspector General Lucas M. Miller echoed these sentiments, expressing gratitude for the establishment of the Commission. He said, “OSIG is dedicated to the values of ethics, integrity, and accountability in state government, and we are grateful that Governor Shapiro has established this Commission to elevate these values within Commonwealth law enforcement.”

Colonel Christopher Paris, Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police, also welcomed the creation of the CLEAR Commission. He believes it will provide an opportunity for the State Police to continue building public confidence and trust. He said, “Our Troopers serve the people of this Commonwealth with honor and integrity, and our personnel are committed to the highest standards of professional conduct.”

Read more about the Pennsylvanians appointed by Governor Shapiro to the CLEAR Commission here.

Read Executive Order 2023-21, Pennsylvania Citizen Law Enforcement Advisory and Review (CLEAR) Commission, here.

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