(CNN) The New York City Council passed a series of reforms for the New York Police Department on Thursday, including ending qualified immunity for officers, which protected them against civil lawsuits.
The package of legislation included five bills and three resolutions that provide additional oversight and require more transparency from the department.
The city council also adopted a policing reform plan mandated by a New York State executive order.
By creating a new local civil right through legislation, New York City residents will be protected against unreasonable search and seizure and excessive force, and bans officers from using qualified immunity as a defense.
Press passes for media outlets will now be issued through the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment instead of by the NYPD as well.
A coalition of several New York City police unions circulated roving billboards around the city on Thursday to express their strong opposition to the legislation.
The New York City Police Benevolent Association (PBA), which represents approximately 24,000 police officers, was one of the most vocal opposition leaders in the reform effort. »