City of Birmingham

Woodfin Schedules Oct. 1 Hearing on Birmingham Police Reforms

Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin. Feb. 11, 2020. (Source: Solomon Crenshaw Jr.)

Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin has set an Oct. 1 hearing to discuss proposed police reforms.

The event is the culmination of a 90-day review by the public safety task force, a seven-member group appointed earlier this year to assess Birmingham Police Department policies. The task force also is requesting public input, inviting interested individuals to submit written or video proposals for new public safety policies.

In June, amid nationwide protests over police violence, Woodfin conducted an internal review of Birmingham Police Department practices, largely based on the #8CANTWAIT campaign. The review showed that the department was “doing pretty good,” Woodfin announced in July, though there was “room for improvement.”

Those improvements included an explicit ban on chokeholds — which he said weren’t authorized by the department anyway — and added direct language to the BPD’s use-of-force policy establishing officers’ “duty to intervene” if they see a colleague using excessive force.

The task force was the next step, Woodfin announced, and would take a “deeper dive” into BPD policy and procedures.

The group, co-chaired by Woodfin and District 2 Councilor Hunter Williams, also includes community advocates Jaselle Houghtlin and Cara McClure, attorney Victor Revill, former police detective Ed Watkins and former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance.

The hearing will take place on Thursday, Oct. 1, from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. in City Council chambers. Proposals may be emailed to The deadline for submissions is Tuesday, Sept. 29, at 5 p.m.