Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Culture > News

The debate around body cams on police officers

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Casper Libero chapter.

The use of body cams at the Brazilian officers´ uniforms causes different debates in the current society. Throughout a set of changes and political amendments related to the implementation, this subject brings up a multitude of questions to be discussed. 

What is the background of the implementation of the body cams in Brazil?

The use of body cams in the Brazilian uniforms emerges on the necessity of increasing police transparency and responsibility. Nationally, its first use was in 2018, during the mandate of the state governor João Dória (PSDB). 

By means of its new implementation, the indices of police violence were reduced, mainly between children and teenagers, with its numbers severed again in 2022, as of the bigger number of installation of that equipment to the police working clothes. 

As a way of confirmation,  details of the Brazilian Comptroller show a significant slump in the number of deaths from police violence. In 2021, there were about 25 violent deaths during service, while in 2019, 110 deaths were registered.

The use of body cams also brought a decrease in the number of deaths of policies in the area, in or out of service. In 2020, 18 policies were victims of homicide at work; in 2021, there were four (-77%); in 2022, six deaths (-66%).

The most current information shows the effectiveness of the use of those cams. In 2023, the state of São Paulo halted a reduction of 62,7% of the indices of violence, pursuant to the Brazilian Forum of Public Security (FBSP). 

What is the debate around the use of body cams?

Also presenting divergences related to its use, the body cams bring the people to intense debates. Although the equipment registers a reduction of violence, its ways of handling present challenges and, as a consequence, several arguments. 
In a conversation with Edilene Rocha, criminal lawyer and criminal law specialist, an example of a positive argument about the use of the cameras is evidenced: “The advance of body cams is of utmost importance for securing the efficacy and transparency at the conducts performed by each public agent in its labor, as it also helps in restraining the abuse of power and police violence that grows in our country”.

The use of the cams also must be marked when related to the collection of evidence. From scratch its recordings, can become an important instrument for investigations and judicial processes. 

The resistance to the use of body cams reverberates deeply between the right-wing extremist speeches, as of now the claim of encroachment of privacy. Those speeches, that cause polarized debates around the theme, make the use of the cams a polemic subject, through lots of extreme addresses related to its use. 

Processing those polemics, one of the speeches of Edilene becomes necessary: “Any democratic country of rights fails when it tries to demonstrate disclosure, efficiency and security in the use of its imputations”.


The article above was edited by Fernanda Miki Tsukase.

Liked this type of content? Check Her Campus Cásper Líbero home page for more! 

Raissa Galvão

Casper Libero '27

Estudante de jornalismo que ama a arte de se comunicar e escrever ;)