Questioning the effectiveness of the 1033 Program

The federal government’s 1033 Program makes surplus military equipment available to state and local law enforcement agencies. Responding to criticism that the program contributes to militarization of policing, the Obama administration put some restrictions in place, which were subsequently removed by the Trump administration. This article summarizes findings from two recent studies indicating that agencies receiving the equipment did not experience crime reductions or fewer officer injuries. Further, information is lacking on whether and how the equipment has actually been used.

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