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Photo: Mike Desmond/WBFO via AP

All 57 officers on the Buffalo Police Department's Emergency Response Team resigned from the tactical unit in support of two colleagues who were suspended for their involvement in shoving a 75-year-old protester on Thursday, The Buffalo News reports.

Why it matters: It comes as videos of violent confrontations between law enforcement and demonstrators have surfaced across the U.S., and amid a crescendo of calls to reform policing to address systemic racism and violence.

The latest: "At this time, we can confirm that contingency plans are in place to maintain police services and ensure public safety within our community," Mayor Byron Brown said in a statement Friday.

  • The man seen in the video is in critical but stable condition, per The Buffalo News.

What they're saying: The union that represents the department's officers has also defended the riot response team, saying the officers were simply following orders. The union said it will pay for any legal fees for the two officers who were suspended.

  • "Our position is these officers were simply following orders from Deputy Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia to clear the square," said Buffalo Police Benevolent Association President John Evans.
  • "It doesn't specify clear the square of men, 50 and under or 15 to 40. They were simply doing their job. I don't know how much contact was made. He did slip in my estimation. He fell backwards."

Go deeper

Updated Sep 7, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Rochester mayor vows to reform police after Daniel Prude's death

Demonstrators in Rochester, New York. Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Lovely Warren, mayor of Rochester, New York, pledged reforms to the city's police as protests continued Sunday over the death of Daniel Prude, a Black man who was experiencing mental health issues when he was detained.

Driving the news: Prude died seven days after being hooded and held down by Rochester police. Police Chief La’Ron Singletary said at a news conference with Warren that he supported the changes and he was "dedicated to taking the necessary actions to prevent this from ever happening again."

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Stock market volatility is supposed to be kryptonite for IPOs, causing issuers to hide out in their private market caves.

Yes, but: This is 2020, when nothing matters.

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Higher education expands its climate push

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New or expanded climate initiatives are popping up at several universities, a sign of the topic's rising prominence and recognition of the threats and opportunities it creates.

Why it matters: Climate and clean energy initiatives at colleges and universities are nothing new, but it shows expanded an campus focus as the effects of climate change are becoming increasingly apparent, and the world is nowhere near the steep emissions cuts that scientists say are needed to hold future warming in check.