Groups Call on Congress to Refuse Funding for Border Surveillance “Smart Wall”

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25 civil liberties and immigration organizations, including Oakland Privacy released an open letter to Congress calling on negotiators not to provide additional funding for border surveillance technologies as part of the “grand compromise” deal around border security. The letter specifies which technologies we are most concerned about, like algorithmic risk-assessment, facial recognition, and biometrics.



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‘Stop Secret Surveillance’ Ordinance Introduced in San Francisco

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On January 29th, San Francisco supervisor Aaron Peskin introduced the Stop Secret Surveillance Ordinance in the City and County of San Francisco. The surveillance transparency measure follows the November 2018 passage of Proposition B, a “Privacy First” initiative approved by SF voters.

SF’s ordinance, which must sit for 30 days before a board policy committee can take it up, includes a total ban on the municipal use of facial recognition technology. If passed, it is believed it would be the first such ban in the nation.

Press coverage from The Verge, Metro UK, NBC, SF Examiner, Gizmodo, Mercury News, Ars Technica, SF Weekly, Wired, Slate, Atlantic

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Surveillance and Secrets

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Type Investigations, formerly the Investigative Fund, looked into what happens when a city goes ahead and builds a Domain Awareness Center without a transparency ordinance in place.

St Louis did that with their “Real Time Crime Center”. Here is what happened.

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Oakland Formalizes No Cooperation With ICE

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On January 22, 2019, the Oakland City Council passed on second reading an ordinance that ends any and all municipal cooperation with ICE, including traffic assistance.

The ordinance, which makes permanent the policy of total non-cooperation, stems from the citywide protest after a West Oakland ICE raid in August of 2017 followed the end of the formal OPD-ICE Memorandum of Agreement.

After a lengthy investigation by Oakland’s Privacy Advisory Commission revealed that the raid on a Guatemalan family had nothing to do with human trafficking, the City Council embraced the new total non-cooperation policy and moved to formalize it as a municipal ordinance.

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Urban Shield Reconstitution Plan Goes to Board of Supervisors.

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Six years of protest, public comment and politicking have finally created a light at the end of the Stop Urban Shield tunnel. 

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On January 14th, 2019, after five months of hearings, leg work and votes, the Alameda County Urban Shield Task Force finished its assigned task. The Task Force was voted into being by the Alameda County Board of Supervisors back in March of 2018 when the Board voted to “end Urban Shield as it is currently constituted.” It began work in September, 2018 and at its last meeting approved a set of recommendations to be presented to the Supervisors that would radically transform Urban Shield from a militarized SWAT Team and weapons extravaganza into a true emergency preparedness conclave and suite of field exercises relevant to the Bay Area.

Tell the Alameda County Board of Supervisors to fully support the recommendations of the Ad-Hoc Committee.

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