Timeline

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1999

  • March. Urban Warrior.  A military force “invades” Oakland as a training exercise. A precursor to “Urban Shield.”

2008

  • DAC began with a grant from the Dept. of Homeland Security in 2008 to the Port of Oakland to secure port facilities “from terrorists.”

2009

  • June. City of Oakland representatives signed a document to “Explore the Development of a Joint Port-OPD-OFD-OES Domain Awareness Coordination Center  …”
  • Sept. The Federal government tentatively approved a grant to the Port of Oakland for $2.9M to implement the Joint City/Port DAC.

2010

  • July. Oakland City Council approves the $2.9M grant noted above.

2011

  • October 10th. Occupy Oakland forms
  • October 25th. Occupy Oakland raided and ousted from Oscar Grant Plaza
  • November 2nd. 30,000 occupy the Port of Oakland

2012

  • January. Final grant documents signed.
  • October. A Request for Proposal to Implement Phase I of the DAC is sent out by the City of Oakland.
  • November. Contract is given to SAIC.

2013

  • February. Emails exchanged between SAIC and City officials discussing problems with Oakland’s Nuclear Free Ordinance (see below).
  • April. SAIC completes Phase I, which “included the Design/build that would include equipment, services and the key City systems’ integration.”
  • May. The Port of Oakland approves transferring “Port Security Grant” monies to fund Phase II of the DAC.
  • June. Edward Snowden reveals documents describing how the Federal Government and the NSA have been spying on Americans (and everyone else) without regard to privacy and the 4th amendment.
  • July 9th. Phase 2 funding for the Domain Awareness Center (DAC) passed the Public Safety Committee on July 9, 2013 and needs to pass full council to receive funding.
  • July. Current and former Occupy Oakland members become aware of the DAC.  A more detailed timeline is here.
  • July 17th. Ali Winston, investigative reporter, writes an article published in the San Francisco Chronicle about the DAC: “Oakland Surveillance Center Raises Concerns” http://www.sfgate.com/crime/article/Oakland-surveillance-center-raises-concerns-4671708.php
  • July 26th. A call on the Occupy Oakland calendar “to organize against the DAC” at the Sudo room is listed.
  • July. The Oakland City Council approves receiving the Port Security Grant funds (some $2M) and gives a sole source, non-bid contract to SAIC to implement Phase II. OOPG members testify against the DAC at City Council.  The vote includes a provision that the DAC will not become operational until a “privacy policy” is in place.
  • August. City staff “discover” (reveal) that SAIC is involved or affiliated with nuclear weapons technology research or support, in violation of Oakland’s Nuclear Free Ordinance.
  • August 15th. Second meeting to “organize against the DAC.”
  • August 29th. Third meeting. The group is now called the “Occupy Oakland Privacy Working Group.”
  • Sept. OOPG changes its name to the Oakland Privacy Working Group (OPWG).
  • Oct. Oakland City Manager Deanna Santana decides to ask the Council to grant her permission to choose a new Phase II contractor from the set of four Phase I contractors whom they had rejected in favor of SAIC last year.
  • Oct. OPWG begins to raise opposition to the DAC.
  • Oct. 13th. New York Times article about surveillance “Privacy Fears Grow as Cities Increase Surveillance” in Oakland and the DAC.
  • Nov 19th. City Council votes 6-1 (McElhaney objecting) to approve Santana’s request.
  • Nov 27th. Darwin BondGraham and Ali Winston publish “Oakland Surveillance Contractor Lied On Official Documents” documenting the SAIC Nuclear Free Ordinance coverup.  http://tinyurl.com/po4frc9_
  • December. First DAC FAQ is created and printed.
  • Dec. 30th: Al Jazeera published an article about the DAC and the opposition to it.

2014

  • Jan 3rd. OPWG has a booth at First Friday, one of a few over the course of the battle against the DAC.
  • Jan. Santana chooses Schneider Electric as the Phase II contractor.
  • Jan. DAC opposition grows. OPWG meetings, held weekly at the Sudo room, start to have dozens of people show.  Brian Hofer joins the group.
  • Jan. OPWG creates an online petition against the DAC. Ultimately it is signed by more than 5000 people!
  • Jan 24th. A “cease and desist” letter threatening a lawsuit on the basis of irregularities in awarding the Phase 2 contract is created by OPWG and others and ultimately delivered to the Council.
  • Jan 28th. Schneider proposal comes before the City Council Public Safety Committee, where it is approved 3-0-1.
  • Feb. Rally and march against the DAC, with giant rat puppet and posters, organized by OPWG. Cat Brooks, Mollie Costello, and Dan Siegel speak at rally.
  • Feb. Negotiations amongst City Council members, the ACLU, the EFF and OPWG are held
  • Feb 18th. More than 50 people testify in unanimous opposition to the DAC, including a number from the Lighthouse Mosque. City Council discusses scaling back the system to only handle Port Security and emergencies, then votes 6-0-2 to postpone a decision for two weeks.
  • March 4th. After unanimous public opposition, the Council voted 5-4, Mayor Quan breaking the tie, in favor of a Port-restricted DAC. Had Quan voted against, or had Mayor-to-be Libby Schaaf abstained instead of voting ‘no,’ the DAC would have been killed outright.
  • March. Stingray (cellphone surveillance) and ALPR (license plate reading technology) are raised as potential issues for OPWG.
  • May. Ad Hoc Privacy Committee is formed, chaired by Brian Hofer, to write a privacy policy for the Port-restricted DAC. DAC remains offline.
  • July OPWG officially endorses the Berkeley ‘no-tasers’ campaign.
  • Sept. OPWG helps protest Urban Shield, resulting in a decision not to hold the militarized police training in Oakland in subsequent years.
  • Oct. OPWG members help organize and run “Inside Urban Shield,” a report-back from reporters and others who attended the Urban Shield trainings and “weapons for sale” convention.
  • Dec. OPWG members lead the charge to fund and acquire an “FOIA Document Scanner.” Josh Smith acquires the scanner.

2015

  • Jan. OPWG members take part in organizing and protests against San Leandro acquiring an armored vehicle, to no avail.
  • Jan. Meridith Sward of OPWG creates a Stingray video.
  • Feb. Santa Clara Board of Supervisors approves purchase of a “Stingray.”  This will later be rescinded.
  • March. Ad Hoc Privacy Committee presents privacy policy to the City Council.
  • March. FLIR becomes an issue (Infrared sensor on a helicopter) in Oakland.
  • April. SB 34 (ALPR regulation for California) begins to move through the legislature.
  • May. Oakland City Council approves privacy policy, technically bringing DAC online despite the Port of Oakland stating that they have no interest in providing funding for it.  The City Council also approves the creation of an Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission, whose first task is to be to create a Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance
  • May. OPWG begins meeting at the OMNI. It had been meeting at the Impact Hub, and before that, at the Sudo room.
  • June. PredPol (Predictive Policing) becomes an issue in Oakland. Council allocates $150K to purchase software.
  • Sept. OPWG begins working with Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian, the ACLU and others to create and pass a Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance in Santa Clara County.
  • Sept. OPWG begins working with Alameda County Supervisors and the ACLU on an ordinance regulating the use of Stingrays and similar (cellphone intercept technology) by County law enforcement.
  • Oct. OPWG members testify at Berkeley City Council against Tasers.
  • Oct. OPWG members testify against Urban Shield participation by Berkeley to the Police Review Commission, to no avail.
  • Oct. OPWG members testify at the Alameda County Board of Supervisors as to the nature of Stingrays and in favor of strict regulation.
  • Nov 3rd. OPWG members testify against appropriating money to give OPD 121 additional shotguns to no avail.
  • Nov 17th. Alameda County Board of Supervisors passes a Stingray regulation ordinance, allowing deployment only with a warrant and with other, significant restrictions.
  • Dec 16th. Berkeley City Council votes not to enact a moratorium on Urban Shield participation by BPD. OPWG members testified in favor, created blown up photos (e.g. “Black Rifles Matter”) and created a video that was shown.

2016

  • Jan. Legislation actually creating the Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission is finally passed into law. Appointments for the positions begin to be accepted.
  • March. OPWG presents at RightsCon in San Francisco.
  • April. It is revealed that BART is planning to install or has already installed Automatic License Plate Readers (ALPRs) at MacArthur Bart as a pilot program. OPWG takes the lead in making a stink about this, testifying before the Board and getting them to halt implementation until a privacy policy and more generally a Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance (SERO) is created and approved.
  • April 28th. First BART hearing on ALPRs. OPWG members testify against proposed pilot program.
  • May 21. OPWG presents at Left Forum in New York City.
  • June 7th. Santa Clara County becomes the first jurisdiction in the nation to pass a Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance
  • Jun 21st. Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission (OPAC) appointees approved by City Council.
  • July. The first meeting of the Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission happens. Brian Hofer is elected as chair.
  • July. OPWG presents at the HOPE conference in New York City.
  • July. Members vote to change the name of OPWG to simply “Oakland Privacy” and to adopt a somewhat revised logo, replacing the “Eye of Sauron” with a digitized eye.
  • July. Meetings begin with Oakland Privacy, ACLU and BART officials and BART police to draft a SERO.
  • July. Oakland Privacy discovers that CALIBRE Press will be training police in “shoot first” tactics in the Bay Area, and makes a stink, with much press being generated. The Santa Clara sheriff, which was to sponsor the event, withdraws support.
  • August. The CALIBRE training takes place at a private location in San Jose.
  • Sept. Oakland Privacy begins working in Berkeley to pass a Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance.
  • Nov. OPAC passes Stingray (Cellphone Tower simulator) use and privacy policy unanimously.

2017

  • Jan 5th – After months of working on the language, OPAC passes SERO unanimously for consideration by the City Council after a public hearing.
  • Feb 7th – Oakland City Council passes the Stingray use and privacy policy. “The Gold Standard” of cell site simulator policies, according to Brian Hofer.
  • March – Richmond becomes interested in having a SERO and a privacy commission.
  • March – Work on modifying proposed statewide SERO by Senator Hill to make it stronger, or opposing it if not.
  • April – Statewide SERO modified sufficiently for the ACLU and Oakland Privacy to endorse.
  • April – Oakland Privacy endorses the ACLU bail reform legislation before the Legislature
  • May 2nd – Email, social media and press campaigns begin to pass the Oakland SERO through the Public Safety Committee, meeting on May 9th.
  • May 9th. SERO passes the Oakland City Council Public Safety Committee unanimously.
  • May 16th. Mass showing at Berkeley City Council against Urban Shield. Vote postponed.
  • May 25. SB-21 (Statewide Surveillance Ordinance) passes out of Senate Appropriations in Sacto after extensive amendments to make it robust.
  • May. Oakland Privacy’s first newsletter sent out.
  • May. Oakland Privacy advises Suzy Struble of Piedmont on dealing with the Piedmont Council’s proclivity to put surveillance everywhere in the City, to little avail.
  • May 26th. California Shotspotter subsidy bill (AB-1559) effectively dies.
  • May 31st – SB-21 (Statewide Surveillance Ordinance) passes the CA State Senate
  • June 1st – Oakland Privacy Commission (OPAC) recommends termination of the memorandum of understanding between Oakland Police Department (OPD) and Immigrations and Custom Enforcement (ICE).
  • June 20th: Berkeley fails to withdraw from Urban Shield, or from NCRIC.
  • July 11. Alameda County Board of Supervisors unanimously convenes work group to develop surveillance transparency ordinance for the County. DA Nancy O’Malley supports the process.
  • July 11. Oakland’s Public Safety Committee unanimously endorses the termination of the memorandum of understanding between Oakland Police Department (OPD) and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and adoption of civil rights ordinance to place all other federal agreements under city policy and Privacy Commission oversight.
  • July 18th. Oakland City Council nixes memorandum of understanding between Oakland and ICE, generating lots of publicity, along with adoption of civil rights ordinance  to place all other federal agreements under city policy and Privacy Commission oversight.
  • July 26th. The Berkeley Police Review Commission unanimously passes Berkeley’s version of the SERO, forwarding it to the Berkeley City Council for consideration.
  • August 1. Alameda Board of Supes rejects Urban Shield vendor contract for racial stereotyping
  • August 16th. Despite nixing of MOU between Oakland and ICE, OPD assists ICE’s HSI division in raid in West Oakland.
  • August 23rd. Oakland Privacy’s second newsletter sent out.
  • August 29th. Ben Bartlett, Berkeley City Council, announces that he is once again in favor of getting Berkeley out of Urban Shield.  Also, he announces his candidacy for the State Assembly.
  • Sept.1. SB 21 (Statewide Surveillance Equipment Regulation Legislation), a bill Oakland Privacy put a lot of time and effort into, fails in the Assembly Appropriations Committee.
  • Oct 3rd. The ” Transparency and Accountability for City Participation in Federal Surveillance Operations” ordinance becomes law in Oakland. No secret or unscrutinized agreements with federal enforcement agencies any more.
  • Oct 5th. Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission Chair and OP member Brian Hofer publishes documents establishing that Oakland’s Chief of Police has provided false information to Oakland concerning the Aug. 16th ICE/HSI raid mentioned above.
  • October. Mike Katz-Lacabe reveals that Freedom of Information Act information he has obtained shows that Alameda County’s hospital, Highland Hospital, has been sending ALPR data of cars visiting the emergency room to NCRIC, the Federal Fusion Center for Northern California, which makes it available to all Federal agencies including ICE.
  • October. Katz-Lacabe also notes that other information from NCRIC shows that BART has been sending ALPR information to NCRIC, despite having promised to not do so until such time as it is approved by the BART Board. It is later suggested by the BART Police Chief that in the transition to the new Chief the camera at MacArthur station was “forgotten about” and continued to transmit information.
  • Nov 1. Brian Hofer presents at a conference in NYU Law on ‘Privacy Localism,’ where the hot topic is community involvement with Oakland and Seattle held up as examples of what to do.
  • Nov 7th. Internal Affairs complaint filed by 8 people against OPD Chief Anne Kirkpatrick for making false statements to the public and the City Council about the August 16 West Oakland ICE Raid. OP members Brian Hofer and Tracy Rosenberg are two of the complainants, joined by attorney Margaret Cunningham, Wellstone Politics Chair Pamela Drake, BBBON cofounder Sharon Rose, Activist Linda Olvera, Rev J. Alfred Smith Jr and Prof. Judith Stacey.
  • Nov 14th. After a scheduled hearing on the ICE raid at an Oakland City Council Public Safety Cmte meeting was cancelled by the Council’s Rules Cmte, Oakland Privacy and 90 of its friends showed up anyway in an impressive demonstration of the community’s resolve to #DeportICE.
  • Nov 16th. The ICE hearing is rescheduled to Dec. 5th by the Rules Committee.
  • Nov 17th. In a power play move, a hearing on the ICE Raid (actually an informational report by the Chief of Police on the ICE Raid) is scheduled using a parliamentary manuever to the next City Council meeting on Nov 28th.
  • Nov 21st. Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf announced that she would support the Kaplan/Brooks proposal to end all OPD cooperation with HSI and ICE.
  • Nov 28th. Oakland City Council hears report from Chief Kirpatrick about the ICE Raid. A large number of speakers, including OP members, speak against further cooperation with ICE. Legislation by Kaplan, Brooks and Gallo introduced to prohibit any and all cooperation with ICE.

2018

  • January 4th. The Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission hears testimony from and asks questions from the director of NCRIC.
  • January 9. Oakland Public Safety Committee unanimously endorses Brooks/Kaplan/Gallo legislation and asks staff to prepare an ordinance permanently ending all OPD cooperation with HSI/ICE.
  • January 16. Oakland City Council passes Kaplan/Brooks/Gallo resolution unanimously
  • January 16. 18 signers to the Internal Affairs complaint against Oakland Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick for untruthful statements about the August 16 West Oakland ICE raid ask the Police Review Board to remove the investigator for asking questions about the targets of the raid instead of the actions and statements of OPD and Chief Kirkpatrick.
  • February 7 City of Alameda rejects planned expansion of ALPR system with Vigilant, one week after Vigilant’s contract with ICE for LPR database access is announced by The Verge.
  • March 5th. Oakland Privacy public records request specialist Mike Lacabe-Katz obtains pictures of last year’s Urban Shield which show ICE agents participating.
  • March 13. After 20 months of work, and last minute negotiations, Berkeley City Council passes the first reading of its Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance.
  • March 19. City of San Pablo postpones $2.9 million expansion of license plate reader dragnet and switch to Vigilant equipment pending more community input.
  • March 20. City of Davis unanimously adopts surveillance transparency ordinance on first reading.
  • April 17 – CA State Senate Judiciary committee moves Senate Bill 1186 for statewide surveillance transparency and rules that Sheriffs and DA’s are not exempt from legislative oversight in the use of surveillance equipment and technologies.
  • April 17 – The City of Alameda refers the first Deport ICE sanctuary city ordinance on a 4-1 vote
  • May 1 – City of Oakland unanimously adopts surveillance transparency ordinance on 1st of two votes.
  • May 1 – City of Berkeley unanimously refers Deport ICE contracting law for review and recommendation by Peace and Justice Commission
  • May 1 – City of Richmond unanimously refers Deport ICE contracting and investment law to staff for return as a proposed ordinance
  • May 15 – City of Oakland unanimously adopts surveillance transparency ordinance. It becomes law upon the 2nd reading.
  • May 15 – City of Richmond votes 6-1 in favor of the DeportICE contracting and investment prohibition ordinance.  A second reading is necessary for it to become law.
  • May 25 – Statewide surveillance ordinance moves forward in legislature but gets watered down to remove reporting requirements.
  • June 4 – Berkeley’s Ad Hoc City Council Subcommittee on Urban Shield and NCRIC votes 3-1 to recommend withdrawal from Urban Shield’s tactical scenarios and expo.
  • Mid-June – Oakland Privacy’s #DeportICE campaign takes on new meaning as publicity about Homeland Security and ICE ripping refugee children from their parents becomes a national fervor.
  • June 18 – Berkeley’s Mayor Arreguin, at end of Ad Hoc Subcommittee meeting, supports assertion that, despite having worked on the issue for a year, the Berkeley City Council has no authority to prohibit Berkeley’s police from participating in Urban Shield.  No one quite knows what happens next.
  • July 10th – Contra Costa County Sheriff announces that he is cancelling his contract with ICE to hold immigration detainees at the West County jail facility in Richmond, CA
  • July 23 – Berkeley City Council vote to withdraw Berkeley’s police from Urban Shield loses 4-5, when Arreguin switches his intended vote at the last minute.
  • Aug 6th – BART Police announce plan for massive, system-wide DAC-like surveillance system including facial recognition technology.
  • Aug 9th – BART Board postpones action on DAC-like surveillance system, in large part due to efforts of Oakland Privacy getting people to the Board meeting at 9:00 AM. Nearly unanimous testimony against proposals.
  • Sept 13 – BART Board unanimously passes SERO.
  • Sept 21 – First meeting of the AlCo task force on redefining Urban Shield.
  • Sept 27 – BART Board unanimously passes 2nd reading of SERO ordinance, putting it into effect.
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