The House passed bipartisan legislation late Wednesday that would empower law enforcement agencies across the country to adopt de-escalation training when encountering individuals with mental health issues as part of an effort to reduce the number of officer-involved fatalities.
The bill passed 264-162 with Republican support. It passed the Democratic-controlled Senate in August.
The proposal — first introduced by Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas and Democratic Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island — will now go to President Joe Biden’s desk for his signature, the Associated Press reports.
The bill that passed the House on Wednesday will amend a 1968 federal crime law to authorize $70 million in annual grant funding for law enforcement training on alternatives to the use of force that include scenario-based exercises for officers. It will also require the Justice Department to develop a series of curriculum and training topics in partnership with stakeholders like law enforcement and civil liberties groups and mental health professionals.