For generations, brave men and women in our nation’s law enforcement community have dedicated their lives to protecting us in big cities, small towns, and suburban neighborhoods across America. Every morning, the police put on their shields and go out to work, hoping that they will return safely. Last year, a record number of law enforcement officers died in the line of duty. On Peace Officers’ Memorial Day and during Police Week, we express our gratitude to those selfless public servants who put themselves in harm’s way to keep us safe and to honor those who lost their lives in the exercise of their functions.
As we see an increase in gun violence and other violent crimes, it is essential that we fund law enforcement with the resources and training they need to do their jobs safely and effectively. That’s why the US bailout provided $350 billion that cities, states, counties and tribes can use to hire more police and invest in proven strategies like community violence intervention, youth programs and other support services. It’s also why my proposed budget for 2023 more than doubles funding for effective community policing through the Community Oriented Policing Hiring Program. In addition, my budget increases support for the United States Marshals and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, so they can apprehend fugitives and combat illegal arms trafficking. fire.
Armed violence does not only affect community members, it also targets law enforcement. Last month at the White House, surrounded by law enforcement, community leaders, and families who have lost loved ones to gun violence, we announced that the Justice Department was curbing the proliferation of ” phantom guns” – privately made firearms without a serial number. numbers that are increasingly appearing on our streets and being used to attack law enforcement officers and members of the public.
My administration is also committed to supporting programs that protect the physical safety of our law enforcement agencies — more body armor, active shooter training, and early warning of threats to officers. We must also do more to protect the mental health and emotional well-being of our officers. Suicide and COVID-19 were among the leading causes of death for law enforcement officers in 2021. Last November, I was proud to sign three bills into law that expand essential counseling resources by peer and mental health for officers, expand eligibility and benefits for first responders with disabilities in the line of duty, and protect federal law enforcement serving overseas. Our officers take an oath to protect us, and we owe them the same commitment.
We must not abandon our streets or accept the false choice between public safety and equal justice. The solution is not to fund our police. It’s about making our streets safer through police services that treat everyone with dignity and respect. It’s about providing officers with the resources, tools and training they need to keep our neighborhoods safe.
During Police Week, let’s show our appreciation for the unsung heroes who nobly wear the badge and put their lives on the line to protect people every day. Let us pay tribute to the brave officers whose bright future was cut short in the exercise of their duties. Let’s unite to help police be the partners and protectors our communities and our nation need for a safer and fairer America.
By joint resolution approved October 1, 1962, as amended (76 Stat. 676), and Public Law 103-322, as amended (36 U.S.C. 136-137), the President was authorized and directed to appoint the May 15 of each year as “Peace Officers Memorial Day” and the week in which it falls as “Police Week”.
THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 15, 2022 Peace Officers Memorial Day and May 15-21, 2022 Police Week. I call on all Americans to observe these events with appropriate ceremonies and activities and to salute our nation’s brave law enforcement officers and to remember our fellow peace officers who gave their last full measure of dedication in the performance of their duties. I also call on the governors of the United States and its territories, and the appropriate officials of all government units, to direct that the flag be flown at half-mast on Peace Officers’ Memorial Day. I further encourage all Americans to fly the flag at half mast from their homes and businesses on this day.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have signed this
the thirteenth of May of the year of grace two thousand and twenty-two and of the independence of the United States of America on the two hundred and forty-six.
JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.