So said truly one of many speakers during a seven hour meeting in Oakland on the 26th of February, 2019, at which Urban Shield had a heart attack. The Alameda County Board of Supervisors kept their word from a year ago and voted to end Urban Shield “as it is currently constituted,” approving recommendations from the Ad Hoc Committee it created that would give Urban Shield a new heart, a new name, and a new purpose.
In 2018, then State Senator Ricardo Lara authored a bill, SB 244, that was signed into law. The bill protected documents submitted to get a driver’s license or state identification card from disclosure to any third party, including ICE or CPB, without a subpoena, court order or a written certification describing the specific circumstances of a health or safety emergency and why there wasn’t time to get a court order.
The law was particularly important because, 5 years earlier, California had implemented AB 60, which authorized the State to issue drivers licenses and ID cards to undocumented residents.
Every year, law enforcement agencies go to the Homeland Security till and ask for some new crime fighting gadgets. Here’s the list of what Bay Area law enforcement agencies want in 2019.
*Sonoma County wants an LRAD (long range acoustical device or sound cannon) and a mobile surveillance tower for “large events”.
*San Mateo County wants an armored tactical transport van for their SWAT team.
*Oakland wants an armored firefighting vehicle
*San Francisco’s Sheriff wants a drone and a mobile surveillance robot
*Santa Cruz wants a drone with an infrared camera.
After 5 years, Urban Shield may end on February 26 …. with your help.
Since 2013, the Bay Area has been trying to transform Urban Shield from a highly militarized SWAT competition and weapons expo into a community-focused safety and resilence exercise
And now we are almost there.
Take action right now.
Following community pressure after the October 3 death of Chinedu Okobi a 36 year old Black man who was tasered by San Mateo County Sheriffs after being stopped for “walking erratically”, San Mateo’s Board of Supervisors is convening a community forum on tasers.
The event will be held on the evening of Feb 11th at 400 County Center in Redwood City and will be preceded by a 5pm rally outside the County headquarters. Oakland Privacy (and one of our members as an individual) submitted comments to the Board, which can be read here.
In the first substantive ruling on whether Senate Bill 1421 applies to investigatory and disciplinary records on use of force and misconduct incidents that occurred prior to January 1, 2019, Contra Costa Superior Court judge Charles Treat ruled that it did, and resoundingly so.
The Oscar Grant Committee and Oakland Privacy joined families impacted by police violence in picketing in front of the courthouse prior to the Feb 8th hearing.