New Sims law to help prevent racial discrimination during traffic stops

A plan designed to combat racial disparities during traffic stops in Illinois was signed into law.

State Senator Elgie R. Sims Jr. (D-Chicago) spearheaded the legislation, which was originally sponsored by former senator President Barack Obama. The plan aims to prevent racial discrimination by collecting data around police stops for drivers and pedestrians.

“Seeing flashing lights in the rearview mirror invokes fear for many, especially people of color, because of the numerous traffic stops that have turned deadly,” Sims said. “This important tool will help ensure that we’re revealing and preventing racial disparities in traffic stops throughout the state.”

The new law eliminates the sunset date for the traffic stop statistical study, which is currently set to end on July 1.

It also creates a task force to study the best data use of technology to collect and compile traffic stop statistical data. The task force must report to the governor and General Assembly by March 1, 2022, and every three years after.

“Together we are working to end racial bias during traffic stops, build police-community relations and guarantee the safety of both police and the communities they serve,” Sims said.

House Bill 1613 goes into effect immediately.

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