September 20, 2020

Volume X, Number 264

September 18, 2020

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Connecticut Requires Implicit Bias Training for Police

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont has signed a bill that requires the police to undergo “implicit bias training” effective immediately.

The Connecticut General Assembly convened in a special session to consider a comprehensive police accountability bill in response to a call to action following the death of George Floyd and the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement. On July 30, 2020, the bill passed the General Assembly and the Governor signed it into law one day later.

The new law amends Section 7-294s of the Connecticut General Statutes (“State and local police training programs to provide training in the use of physical force and body-worn recording equipment and cultural competency and sensitivity training”).

Currently, police officers are required to undergo training on the use of physical force, the use of body-worn recording equipment, and cultural competency and sensitivity and bias-free policing. The amendment modifies the scope of this training to include “implicit bias training.”

The new law defines “implicit bias training” as “training on how to recognize and mitigate unconscious biases against a particular segment of the population that might influence a police officer’s judgments and decisions when interacting with a member of such segment of the population.”

Police officers will be required to be trained on the existence of individual preferences and stereotypes that can affect their perceptions, actions, and decisions in an unconscious manner due, in large part, to each individual’s background, cultural environment, and personal experiences (“unconscious bias”). They also will be taught how to recognize and mitigate unconscious bias. The goal of the training will be to ensure that police officers are aware of their implicit bias while performing their duties. This new requirement comes at a time when public and private employers, at an increasing frequency, are conducting bias training.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2020National Law Review, Volume X, Number 216


About this Author

Tanya Bovee, employment law compliance attorney, employment lawyer, disability accommodation, Jackson Lewis, Hartford law firm
Office Managing Principal

Tanya A. Bovée is the Office Managing Principal of the Hartford, Connecticut, office of Jackson Lewis P.C.

Ms. Bovée routinely advises and provides management training on all aspects of employment law compliance, employment disputes and personnel matters such as hiring, firing, performance management, internal investigations, and disability accommodation. She also has an active litigation practice, defending employers from federal and state claims. Ms. Bovée also defends employers in OFCCP compliance reviews and oversees...

Katessa M. Charles Employment Litigation Attorney Jackson Lewis Los Angeles, CA

Katessa M. Charles is a Principal in the Los Angeles, California, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Her practice focuses on representing employers in workplace law matters, including preventive advice and counseling.

Ms. Charles is a legal strategist, problem solver, and committed advocate. Ms. Charles resolves commercial and employment disputes, including unfair competition, trade secret, contract, privacy, discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims. She defends corporate clients against claims brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Family Medical Leave Act, California Fair Employment and Housing Act, California Wage Orders, and other related federal and state statutes and regulations. She has experience in a broad range of industries from manufacturing to entertainment, and has arbitration and jury trial experience in state and federal courts.

Ms. Charles counsels employers in all areas of employment law, including state and federal wage and hour, employee compensation, privacy, employee leaves of absence and performance, employment and service agreements, outside salespersons, independent contractors, unfair competition, and trade secret issues. Ms. Charles represents employers in administrative proceedings, including responding to charges filed with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, California Labor Commissioner, and U.S. Department of Labor.

Ms. Charles assists employers with reducing their workforces, developing personnel handbooks, and training supervisory employees on the prevention of sexual harassment.

Ms. Charles also speaks on a multitude of employment and management related topics, including hiring and firing, leaves of absence, disability accommodation, personnel policies, discrimination laws, trade secrets, unfair business practices and privacy in the workplace.

Samia Kirmani, Jackson Lewis Law Firm, Unemployment Counseling Attorney

Samia M. Kirmani is a Principal in the Boston, Massachusetts, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. She concentrates her practice in employment counseling, training and litigation on behalf of management.

Ms. Kirmani provides practical legal advice to clients on various employment law issues, including discrimination, health and leave management, reductions in force, retaliation and whistleblower matters, individual separations, and employee relations issues. Ms. Kirmani also assists clients with policy creation, revision and...

Of Counsel

Russell N. Jarem is Of Counsel in the Hartford, Connecticut, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. His practice focuses on representing employers in workplace law matters, including preventive advice and counseling.

Mr. Jarem regularly advises and represents employers in a broad range of employment law matters, including litigation under state and federal anti-discrimination statutes in a variety of forums, including state and federal courts, the Department of Labor, the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, and the Equal Employment Opportunities...

Kristen Baylis, Jackson Lewis, Labor compliance attorney, discrimination allegations lawyer,

Kristen M. Baylis is an Associate in the Denver, Colorado, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. She practices primarily in the area of employment litigation.

Ms. Baylis brings to her clients knowledge and insight into the federal courts she gained while serving as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Patrick Michael Duffy, United States District Judge for the District of South Carolina, Charleston Division. Using that insight, Ms. Baylis counsels employers to prevent litigation and defends employers in litigation with employees and...