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After weeks of protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death, a new poll shows that a majority of Californians support sweeping reforms to law enforcement — including measures that would make it easier to prosecute and sue police officers, limit the negotiating power of police unions and shift police funding to social workers and mental health providers.
The backing for such measures comes amid growing concern about race relations in the state, the poll found, and despite the fact that a majority of respondents expressed some satisfaction with their local police force.
“The data suggest that there’s widespread public concern about police practices,” said Eric Schickler, co-director of UC Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies, which conducted the poll of likely voters at the end of July. “For many voters, that does not translate into a simple condemnation of police but a more nuanced position that reforms are needed.”