• Demand for the University of Washington Administration to Meet the Needs of Black Students on Campus
    The University of Washington prides itself on diversity which barely exist at the institution. After numerous conversations between President Ana Marie Cauce and the Black Student Union about our experiences and how we can better improve the diversity at this university, President Cauce has overlooked our experiences and refuses to take the actions necessary to making BIPOC students feel safe and welcome on campus. We have had enough. Thus Black Students will work together with faculty, allies and local activist to ensure that our demands are met. Below are brief descriptions of each demand: 1. BREAK ALL TIES WITH SPD. Both formal and informal in the form of contracts, agreements, and MOUs. We suggest taking the following steps: a. Immediately stop handing over people detained by UW Police Department to SPD custody b. Stop using SPD to respond to public safety needs, including referrals for welfare checks under the Safe Campus program. c. Stop using SPD for additional security for any events, including sporting events, concerts, and ceremonies. 2. DISARM AND DIVEST FROM UWPD. Arming UWPD officers is excessive and unnecessary. Black students are already traumatized by the violence perpetrated to Black individuals by the hands of police. Arming the UWPD only puts Black individuals in constant fear, worry and frankly more at risk. The use of police dogs must be banned. Many communities of color in the US associate police dogs with the terror of state violence. We need to divest from UWPD and reallocate those funds into our community 3. ALLOCATE FUNDS TO BLACK RSO’S AND THE AMERICAN ETHNIC STUDIES DEPARTMENT. Instead of spending a ridiculous amount of money on UWPD, the University of Washington should invest in departments/resources that cater to the needs of its black students. It should not be students' jobs to spend out of pocket money to make students more comfortable, and or raise money for scholarships for its students. There also needs to be an increase in funding for the AES departments. This would not only help students have more resources and to help expand their learning, but increase the pay for the faculty who work in those departments. 4. HIRE MORE BLACK FACULTY. According to the Diversity Metrics Data Book by the Board of Regents, as of 2018, 68% of faculty is white, while 1.7% is Black. This statistic is embarrassingly low for an institution that prides itself on diversity and equity. The demand for more Black faculty dates back to 1968, with the first year of the Black Student Union here at the University of Washington. Today, 52 years later, this demand has not only been ignored, but is still necessary with the growing population of the UW. The lack of representation of Black faculty not only prevents students from having role models who they can relate to, but it sends a subtle message that only white people are capable of teaching at a higher level, which is simply, untrue. 5. INCREASE THE DIVERSITY CREDIT REQUIREMENT AND MAKE AFRICAN STUDIES A MAJOR. The current diversity requirement for UW students is 5 credits. Again, for an institution that prides itself on diversity, this is embarrassingly low. One 5 credit class will not provide students with enough historical background to enter the world an anti-racist. Students must be exposed to the atrocities that have been committed upon Black and brown folks, and how these communities are impacted to this day. Finally, African Studies should not only be an option for a minor, but a major. It is unjust that there is a major for Asian Studies, European Studies, and Latin American Studies, but not African Studies. 6. REMOVE STATUES OF RACIST FIGURES. Statues in place at the University of Washington are preservers of our dark past. The George Washington statue, in particular, symbolizes a man who owned over 300 Black slaves and profited from their labor. This is not a history that should be glorified and celebrated as it perpetuates white supremacy and preserves its historical imposition. Thus, the George Washington Statue, along with all others that symbolize racist figures, should be removed from the University of Washington. 7. FUND AND EXPAND MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES FOR UW STUDENTS. Currently, the waiting time to talk to a mental therapist can be more than 3 consecutive weeks. For Black students, the detriment of such a long waiting time is exacerbated by the severe lack of Black therapists, who tend to understand and empathize with our experiences. It's been shown that Black students feel more comfortable talking with Black therapists as opposed to non-black ones; how can one Black therapist be enough for the population of Black students at UW and why should we have to wait for urgent mental issues? In addition, the students are limited from accessing mental health services as they are often costly and require insurance coverage, which may not be affordable for students. Thus, the University of Washington should expand and fund affordable services, along with hiring more Black therapists. #DownWithWashington #KeepThePressureOn #DisarmUWPD
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    Created by Black Student Union UW
  • Justice for BJ Statler
    On March 27, 2019, Inglewood Officers Julian Baksh and Jonathan Rivers responded to a call at the Inglewood Church of Scientology in Inglewood, CA. During the interaction with my brother, Brian Leslie Statler, Jr. (BJ), they killed him with a single gunshot wound to the head. He died before making it to the hospital. An investigation had been declared since both officers sustained non-fatal gunshot wounds that they incidentally gave to each other. My family was not notified of his death by the Inglewood Police Department (IPD) and it took incessant calling to the LA Coroner's Office to confirm his body was there, three days after the police took his life. I was interviewed by Detectives Michael Han and Cesar Jurado, who asked any question they could to villainize BJ, to justify their colleagues killing him and to close out their investigation. It's been over a year and a half that the investigation has been going on and we have no reason to believe the officers have been fired, suspended or held accountable. It's not a stretch to believe, since they killed once, they will do it again. These officers are not fit to serve the community and need to be removed. Additionally, the Inglewood Police Department needs to implement training and execution of de-escalation policies because deadly force should never be an option! According to The Washington Post Fatal Force report, BJ was the only man shot and killed by the IPD in 2019 and they've neglectfully handled his case. In their continuing to allege its ongoing investigation, our attorney has not had access to any of the reports of BJ's death, his personal belongings or any information that would bring understanding to what happened that fateful day. They possess custody of and control all of it and have not made any effort to share it with us. Our attorney has confirmed that a trial date has been set. It'll be nearly 3 years after his murder before we have the opportunity to hold these officers and the Inglewood Police Department accountable. The trial date is set for November 9, 2021. His family deserves to know what happened. He should be alive and we demand justice! *** What are we asking for? I. The Inglewood Police Department's negligence to transparency and lack of cooperation needs to be held accountable. We believe they've conspired to justify and cover up their misconduct by preparing and filing false reports of the shooting. II. Officers Baksh and Rivers need to be held accountable for their actions to the fullest extent of the law. Their conduct was willful, malicious, and done with a reckless regard for the rights and safety of BJ. Their gross mishandling of the situation is evident by the fact that they shot each other in addition to killing BJ. Murder is still a crime no matter who committed it. III. Mayor James Butts should devote considerable resources and time to the shooting. BJ was killed on his watch and by his officers. We ask of him, why isn't BJ's case a larger priority? Doesn't yet another black man being killed by the police warrant your time and attention? In fact, the Coroner ruled it a Homicide. Does that not warrant expedient action? IV. The Inglewood Police Department has provided inadequate training in the use of deadly force and policy reform needs immediate attention to implement de-escalation policies to ensure another family is not broken apart by their misconduct.
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    Created by Krystle Statler
  • Tell the City of Los Angeles to implement the People's Budget
    For five years now, Los Angeles activists have been fighting to adopt a city budget that will provide care and resources for the people. And for just as long, Mayor Garcetti has increased the budget for LAPD, sacrificing funding for vital programs that actually create safe communities. With the coronavirus pandemic’s outsized impact on Black people, and the recent uprisings that echo demands to #DefundThePolice across the country, it has become nothing less than imperative that the City of Los Angeles decrease funding for police and increase investment in services that provide for our people: housing, mental health care, rent suspension and cancellation, funding for youth programs, and investments that directly benefit Black communities. Demand that Los Angeles adopt the People’s Budget, not more funding for police.
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    Created by Dr. Melina Abdullah
  • Abolish laws that allow Police officers to have sex with detainees
    Anna Chambers is an 18 year old girl who was smoking weed in a car in Brooklyn last year with two of her guy friends. The officers smelled the weed, arrested only Anna, and let the two boys go. They then took her in the back of the police van, handcuffed, and took turns raping her. The officers in court said they were “seduced” and the act was “consensual”, an excuse that (horrifyingly) often works because this law is in place, and because the judiciary system places way too much trust in law enforcement officers. In 32 states, police officers have the legal right to engage in sexual acts with people in custody. Rape is technically still illegal, but the power dynamic that is present in the case of police officer and prisoner/detainee makes consensual sex impossible. Especially when the justice system is predisposed to giving police officers extreme and unethical amounts of immunity when it comes to committing acts such as murder and rape. If a 17 year old classmate cannot legally have sex with their 18 year old classmate because of the questionability of the validity of that 17 year old's consent, WHY can police officers have sex with prisoners? This is not a one-off event! This Law needs to change. “In the six-year period from 2009 to 2014, about 550 police officers had lost their badges for rape, sodomy and other types of sexual assault; and a further 440 for possession of child pornography and other sex crimes; or sexual misconduct such as propositioning citizens, sexting juveniles, or having consensual but prohibited sex while on duty. That number was “unquestionably an undercount because it represents only those officers whose licenses to work in law enforcement were revoked”, wrote the AP. ‘Not all states take such action’.”
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    Created by Emily Hime
  • Tell MDCPS to Allow the People to Testify for Budget Hearings
    MDCPS is the nation's fourth largest school board district, with over 350,000 students, and is the largest employer in the county. In the midst of a pandemic and economic crisis, we all know public schools will be one of the worst hit, with severe budget cuts concurrent with over-policing policies. Join Power U in demanding that schools be sites of support and holistic student development.
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    Created by Power U Center for Social Change Picture
  • Defunding BGPD
    During our council meeting on 6/22/2020, many concerned residents commented that the city council needs to reconsider their proposed budget for The Bell Gardens Police Department. However, individuals who oppose the defunding of BGPD created a petition that was not representative of our community’s needs and concerns. Their petition received a mere twenty signatures. A problem expressed via their petition was that the Police Explorers program would be heavily impacted. However, this program receives only four-thousand dollars (to pay salaries for police officers) of the BGPD’s 15 million dollar budget. The program depends on extensive fundraisers, NOT the police budget. If funds were reasonably invested, we would be able to fund many community programs that offer a space for youth development. This petition is meant to demonstrate to the city council that many Bell Gardens residents do not support a budget that allocates 53% of our funds to BGPD. Many residents believe that we should divest (incrementally remove funding from the police budget) in our police department and invest into other resources in our community. This petition will record Bell Gardens’ community members responses to our proposed city budget and alternatives to funding.
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    Created by Estephanie Garcia
  • End the College Board's Whitewashing of US History
    In 2014, the College Board shifted from a five-page course outline for APUSH to an extensive outline containing over a hundred pages that went far more in-depth regarding the standards that the course should cover. The new coverage received heavy backlash from conservatives across the country, calling it “unpatriotic” and “biased”, despite being factual. Unfortunately, the College Board caved after only a single year with the new standards and lightened the document’s tone regarding slavery and racism, releasing a newly revised document that is still in use today. Examples of changes made include the removal of references to the European and colonial beliefs in white supremacy in Period 1, as well as the removal of lines referring to “anti-black sentiments” when describing the Antebellum era. In light of the recent spike in anti-Black violence, the College Board ought to not only bring back the original tone utilized by the 2014 version of the outline when discussing racism but also expand the required course content to cover the modern-day ramifications and continuations of racist and anti-Black sentiment. Nowhere in the document are policies like redlining, the war on drugs, and mass incarceration mentioned, despite their huge role in oppressing BIPOC people. On a broader level, most mentions of modern injustice to marginalized groups are covered only as a subsection of the civil rights movement - we’re only learning about the injustices as a subset of the calls for justice, rather than learning about the injustices themselves. For instance, the lesbian and gay communities are only brought up once in the entire text, and that’s when broadly referring to the various civil rights movements - not a single other LGBTQ+ group is mentioned throughout the text. Furthermore, the language utilized by the AP curriculum ought to shift as well - for example, "slave" should be replaced by "enslaved person", as the former reduces the people who were enslaved to nothing more than their status, while the latter emphasizes their humanity and the fact that those enslaved were still people. The words used to refer to the Indigenous peoples of America are controversial, and there’s little agreement on what word to use - however, referring to groups of Indigenous peoples by their nations is almost universally agreed upon, yet not a SINGLE Indigenous tribe/nation is mentioned by name. One of the greatest examples of eurocentrism comes from this quote: “French, Dutch, British, and Spanish colonies allied with and armed American Indian groups”. Each of the European nations are all specified by name, but not a single one of the Indigenous nations were. There’s also a significant lack of coverage regarding post-WWII immigration - for instance, deportation never once shows up throughout the text, despite being arguably one of the most significant policies affecting Hispanic workers and undocumented immigrants to this day. The course content more or less completely ignores the barriers that immigrants (especially Hispanic and Southeast Asian) faced. As the organization responsible for the education of millions of history students, it is vital that the College Board acknowledges its role in shaping our nation’s future. A strong understanding of history requires a complete understanding of history - one that includes and embraces the analysis and comprehension of centuries of government policy dedicated to subjugating Black, BIPOC, and marginalized communities. News Coverage: https://www.newsweek.com/newly-revised-ap-us-history-standards-take-softer-tone-racial-history-america-358537 2014 Course Standards: https://time.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/ap-us-history-course-and-exam-description.pdf Current Course Standards: https://secure-media.collegeboard.org/digitalServices/pdf/ap/ap-us-history-course-and-exam-description.pdf
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    Created by Brandon Pan
  • @Cornell: Rescind Nathan Panza's Offer of Admission
    There is a disturbing video circulating of an incoming student to the Dyson School of Business and a recruit to Cornell’s football team. Nathan Panza is seen in a video using racial slurs and laughing at a disturbing comment made about George Floyd, a recent emblematic example of police brutality and racial injustices in the country. I found this video shocking, not only because of the casual nature of this disgusting conversation, but also because of Panza’s awareness to not post the content online. It showed his true character and also that he knows how to navigate situations of bigotry in a way that he can partake but not face repercussions. I have no doubt that part of this carefulness comes from knowing that he will be attending Cornell in the fall and doesn’t want to lose that opportunity. As a Cornell student, I’ve seen examples of racism across the campus that all too often reflect Panza’s actions. Disgusting behavior that is executed in a way that can be kept quiet and not get out to a wider audience. I’ve also heard the voices of many Black students in recent weeks discussing these actions and microaggressions themselves and how they feel alienated and othered at Cornell. How can a school that prides itself on having an “any person, any study” allow students like Panza to plague its campus and infringe on the experiences of Black students on the same campus? Similarly, how can statements from Martha Pollack and the football team about combatting racial injustices be taken seriously if they are unwilling to take action against students like Nathan Panza? I am calling for the immediate rescinding of Nathan Panza’s admittance to Cornell and a firm administrative stance on students (and prospective students) like him in the future. There is a well documented issue of racism on Cornell’s campus that has never truly been addressed. The termination of Panza’s attendance at Cornell would be a step that the administration could take to denounce such actions and set a firm stance for the future. If the administration fails to take action against him, it will send a loud and clear message to the Black student body that public statements are as far as Cornell is willing to go against racism on campus.
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    Created by P C
  • Defund FPD and reinvest in Black communities
    We, residents of Fremont, recognize that we are in a moment of uprising in support of the decades-long struggle for Black liberation. A clear mandate has emerged from your constituents: defund the police. Policing in this city, like policing everywhere in America, is an institution that descends directly from chattel slavery. It cannot be reformed, any more than the institution of slavery could be reformed, and any such call betrays a grave complicity with the suppression of Black liberation. Fremont residents are committed to enacting the changes to our systems to ensure that our city ceases to uphold institutions of white supremacy and violence, and moves toward care, safety, and liberation for all. We recognize that the end of policing is here. The people of Fremont are ready to meet this moment, and we call on our elected officials to take action to bring the change we need to see. None of us are free until all of us are free.
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    Created by Defund FPD Picture
  • Release the Names and Records of the Six Police Officers Disciplined 7/5/16
    On July 5, 2016, members of the Maplewood police department participated in racial profiling and police brutality against a group of black teenagers, resulting in the arrest of four South Orange and Maplewood teenagers. The Maplewood teenager who was arrested was punched and kicked by police officers while handcuffed and face down on the ground. Six officers were disciplined for this action, but none were fired or charged. Teenagers were being herded out of their home towns and prevented from returning in an act of ignorance and racial profiling. They were also pepper sprayed when they resisted. The identities of the officers were never released. As far as the public knows, all six officers disciplined remain on the force. As members of the public, we deserve to know if the officers actively policing our streets have committed acts of racially charged brutality. This town has built its image on diversity and equality, but has consistently fallen short when it comes to protecting those ideologies. Maplewood Township has repeatedly claimed that we as a town will be working towards police reform, but how can we reform if we do not acknowledge the past?
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    Created by Susanna Mann
  • STOP OVER SENTENCING OUR AFRICAN AMERICAN BOYS
    Because I am an African American male and my brothers friends are being over charged , indicted, over sentencing
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    Created by Mikquez Berry
  • Make Juneteenth an Official California State Holiday!
    Every year our states celebrate the Fourth of July to honor our nation’s independence from Great Britain, in 1776. The United States continued to deny freedom to enslaved Africans for almost another 100 years. We still do not have a national holiday celebrating the official end of the brutal enslavement our Ancestors endured. Despite Abraham Lincoln’s efforts with the implementation of the Emancipation Proclamation that took effect on January 1, 1863, the executive order was not enforced in Texas until June 19th when Union Gen. Gordon Granger rode in to deliver the news after the official end of the Civil War, in 1865. Even though the E.P. took place in 1863, Texas was considered a fringe state. As a young mixed Black womxn, moving through Oakland public schools did not allow me the opportunity to learn about my heritage and/or ancestors in the way that I believe we should have. Only after graduating have I come to understand our history and the importance of Juneteenth. Juneteenth marks a day of the utmost significance in American history. It represents the ways in which freedom for Black people has been delayed. It should be celebrated as the day when all Americans were liberated.
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    Created by Aminah Hanif