The executive order signed on Wednesday (May 25) launches a national registry of officers fired for misconduct and paves the way for state and local police departments to tighten restrictions on chokehold and no-knock warrants. Biden's legislation also implements a requirement for all federal agents to wear body cameras and hinders the transfer of military equipment to police agencies.
Civil rights leaders have grown frustrated with Biden's failed efforts to pass sweeping police reform. The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act failed at gaining bipartisan support and didn't make it past the Senate.
Since the Justice in Policing Act failed to pass, the administration has said they've been working on their own path to implementing tangible changes in policing tactics. Biden again urged Congress to take action before signing the executive order on Wednesday.
“I know progress can be slow and frustrating, and there’s a concern that the reckoning on race inspired two years ago is beginning to fade," Biden said in a statement.
“Today, we’re acting. We’re showing that speaking out matters, being engaged matters and that the work of our time, healing the soul of this nation, is ongoing and unfinished and requires all of us never to give up. Always to keep the faith,” he continued.
The families of police brutality victims including Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Elijah McClain, Amir Locke, and Atatiana Jefferson attended the signing at the White House, a senior administration official said.
According to Biden's executive order, police will be required to intervene and stop the use of excessive force when seen and administer medical aid when needed.
Biden is unable to directly issue mandates to state and local law enforcement agencies, but the executive order encourages attorney generals to use their power to give grants to agencies who want to adopt new policies, senior administration officials said.