Area Police Departments Receive State Grants to Launch Body-Worn Camera Programs

Police officer with body-cam in North Charleston, South Carolina. (Creative Commons.)

A number of area police departments are among 64 across the state sharing in more than $4 million in state grants to start or expand Body-Worn Camera programs.

Those police departments awarded grants Thursday are Amesbury, $48,000; Andover, $102,484; Georgetown, $12,526; Groveland, $12,906; and Lawrence $249,890. The grants are the first in a five-year, $20 million capital grant program expected to deploy 9,000 body-worn cameras across Massachusetts’ cities and towns.

“We are glad to provide communities with these resources for body-worn camera programs, because they improve public safety, strengthen community-police relations and enhance the values of transparency and accountability,” said Gov. Charlie Baker. “This technology offers municipalities a valuable tool in support of municipal police in their efforts to ensure public safety and transparency in their communities.”

The grant application requires each municipal department to submit a comprehensive deployment plan that describes a deliberate and phased plan to deploy the technology, as well as specific ways the proposed program will enhance the agency’s mission. Currently, 10% of local police departments use body-worn cameras, but a poll conducted by the Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association found 75% of departments are interested in starting a program.

“Body-worn camera programs also provide law enforcement agencies with an important tool to improve training and advance best practices. This grant program and the resulting implementation of advanced technology will improve safety for police and communities across the Commonwealth,” said Public Safety and Security Secretary Terrence Reidy.

Comments are closed.