Resource Library

Body-worn Cameras Model Policy

Provided by League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust

Date: August 2015

This body-worn cameras model policy is a Minnesota-specific response to the need for guidance on body-worn camera use, specifically by law enforcement, and related data administration issues under existing state laws, including the 2016 “Body Cam Bill,” the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act and Records Retention Schedule.

Before adopting this policy, a county/agency should be familiar with the contents of the  white paper Use of Body-worn Cameras. The paper identifies some of the more significant policy choices that agencies will likely need to consider in developing their own body-worn camera guidelines.

The model policy is written from a city perspective and includes references to laws and regulations for Minnesota cities. The policy will need to be adjusted to comply with laws and regulations for counties.

This model policy is offered in Word format so that re-keying for your own use is minimized. Make sure to customize as prompted in the text and delete comments before finalizing the policy as you want it to be adopted. Where optional provisions are provided, you must choose one of the options, but choosing “option 1,” for example, does not require you to choose “option 1” at every choice point.

The working group that developed and reviewed this 2016 updated model policy includes: League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust, Minnesota Counties Intergovernmental Trust, Minnesota Chiefs of Policy Association, Minnesota Association of City Attorneys, Minnesota County Attorneys Association, Minneapolis Police Department, St. Paul Police Department, Cannon Falls Police Department, Burnsville Police Department and Columbia Heights Police Department. Their participation does not necessarily signify agency endorsement of the model policy by the individual’s employing agency.

This material is provided as general information and is not a substitute for legal advice. Consult your attorney for advice concerning specific situations.