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WATCH: White House Deputy Assistant to the President Ja'Ron Smith speaks on police reform

Posted at 4:15 PM, Jun 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-17 17:23:04-04

(WXYZ) — The White House is defending against criticism that the president's executive order on police reform didn't go far enough.

On Tuesday in the Rose Garden, President Donald Trump signed the order that would create a database that tracks police officers with excessive use-of-force complaints, provide incentives for departments to adopt best practices and encourage social workers to join police when responding to non-violent calls involving mental health, addiction and homelessness issues.

Trump did not mention systematic racism, and critics have argued the move falls short of the seismic change that protests around the country are calling for.

"The president has called this a first step. And we did as much as we could do through the administration and we’re looking to congress to see how much we can get done, Where we can find common ground, because the issue is very complex," White House Deputy Assistant to the President, Ja'Ron Smith, said to Brian Abel on Wednesday. "I mean, In many cases we certainly want accountability by the police but we also want the police to be able to do their job."