Texas OKs weakened ‘Sandra Bland Act,’ sends it to governor

May 20, 2017

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A Texas proposal named for a black woman found dead in jail following a confrontational traffic stop is headed to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk.

The Texas Legislature gave final approval Saturday to the “Sandra Bland Act.” But Bland’s sister, Sharon Cooper, has said it’s “gut-wrenching” that lawmakers stripped police reforms from the bill to ensure passage.

It originally called for broad police accountability and anti-racial profiling measures. As approved, though, it focuses on mental health treatment for people jailed.

Cooper said those compromises rendered Bland invisible.

Bland’s 2015 death was a flashpoint for the Black Lives Matter movement. She was stopped for not signaling a lane change before being pulled from her car.

Abbott can sign or veto the bill. It automatically becomes law if he takes no action.

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