Every police officer in Chicago will be armed with a Taser by June, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said on Wednesday.
The mayor said it is part of a “major overhaul” of the Chicago Police Department’s training program and is intended evolve the way officers respond to incidents.
“The policy changes center around de-escalation tactics to reduce the intensity of a conflict or a potentially violent situation at the earliest possible moment, emphasizing that the foremost goal is to protect the safety of all involved," Emanuel said in a statement.
The Police Department will begin to require every cop who "responds to calls for service" to be equipped with a Taser and trained to use it by June 1, 2016, Emanuel said.
The Chicago Police Department, which currently has more than 12,000 officers, has been under fire in recent months for a series of fatal shootings.
Emanuel announced at a press conference earlier this month the termination of Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, saying that the public's trust in the Department has "been shaken and eroded."
He said McCarthy "has become an issue, rather than dealing with the issue, and a distraction."
John Escalante was appointed as interim Superintendent.