June 02, 2015


Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20) introduced an amendment to increase funding for police body cameras that passed the House of Representatives by voice vote. The amendment allocates an additional $10 million to the Department of Justice's Body Worn Camera Partnership Program and brings funding for that program up to $25 million. Rep. Castro's amendment is on H.R. 2578, the CJS Appropriations bill, on which the House is expected to vote in the coming days. 

"In recent years, we have seen more and more tragic encounters between community members and law enforcement that have been impossible to ignore,"? said Rep. Castro. "The American public and national police organizations alike widely support the use of body cameras and the accountability that technology brings. My amendment makes it easier for law enforcement agencies to afford body camera technology and is one of several steps needed to help rebuild trust between our communities and police."?

Already, 25 percent of the nation's 17,000 police agencies use body cameras, and studies show that 86 percent of Americans support requiring on-duty patrol officers in their communities to wear video cameras. The International Association of Chiefs of Police has also voiced its support for the technology.

The funding Rep. Castro's amendment provides to the Body Worn Camera Partnership Program supports competitive grants for the purchase of body-worn cameras for law enforcement agencies, as well as training and technical assistance. The amendment is cost-neutral. 

"These additional resources will help increase law enforcement accountability, mend police-community relations, and improve the safety of cities and towns across America," added Rep. Castro. "I'm pleased this important measure received such strong, bipartisan support."

Video of Rep. Castro introducing his amendment on the House floor is available here: LINK