(WTVO) — The countdown to the day all police officers in Illinois will be required to wear body-worn cameras is underway now that the Illinois SAFE-T Act has been signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
Pritzker signed the amended act Wednesday. One of the provisions amends the Illinois Law Enforcement Officer-Worn Body Camera Act, enacted in 2016, to require all officers to wear on-duty body cameras by Jan. 1, 2025.
The amendment was part of the state’s sweeping criminal justice reform bill that ends cash bail, restructures sentencing laws, and prioritizes treatment and rehabilitation for low-level drug crimes.
“This bill was also infused with solutions from individuals most directly impacted: survivors of domestic violence, survivors of crime, and those who have been detained pre-trial only because they are poor,” Pritzker said in a release.
As of this report, only 10% of law enforcement agencies in the state are equipped with body-worn cameras.
Meanwhile, the lawsuit filed by 62 Illinois state’s attorneys seeking to block implementation of the SAFE-T Act was scheduled to be heard starting today, but has been pushed back to Dec. 20.
There has been much confusion and vitriol surrounding the passage and haphazard attempts to implement the SAFE-T Act over the past year and a half,” the attorneys said in a November statement. “We are hopeful that now, calmer heads will prevail, the rule of law will be respected, and the judiciary in its wisdom will once again make it clear that the constitution’s mandates must be followed and the general assembly may not simply ignore them whenever it pleases.”
The hearing, which will take place in Kankakee County Court, will take place 11 days before the law, takes effect.