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Black Lives Matter protest
Photography Melissa Arras

Rihanna, Billie Eilish, and more call for New York police reform

Megan Thee Stallion, Ariana Grande, and Meek Mill are also among the artists that have signed a request to make police officers’ disciplinary records public

In an open letter to New York State, hundreds of figures from the music industry have called for the repeal of statute 50-A, a law that conceals police officers’ personnel and disciplinary records from the public.

Among the hundreds of signatories for the open letter are musicians such as Rihanna, Billie Eilish, Megan Thee Stallion, and Ariana Grande.

Grimes, Hailey and Justin Bieber, James Blake, and Princess Nokia have also pledged their support, along with Meek Mill, who has vowed to fight for justice reform since his release from prison back in 2018.

The focus on statute 50-A comes weeks after the killing of George Floyd in police custody, which saw Derek Chauvin, a white police officer, kneel on his neck for almost nine minutes (Chauvin has since been charged with second-degree murder, following Black Lives Matter protests in cities across the world).

Floyd’s death is directly referenced in the open letter, which reads: “We mourn the killing of George Floyd and the unnecessary loss of so many black lives before his.” 

“We must hold accountable those who violate the oath to protect and serve, and find justice for those who are victim to their violence. An indispensable step is having access to disciplinary records of law enforcement officers.” 

“New York statute 50-A blocks that full transparency, shielding a history of police misconduct from public scrutiny, making it harder to seek justice and bring about reform. It must be repealed immediately.”

Read the full letter here.