Occupy Berkeley supports the Coalition For A Safe Berkeley's civil rights restoration project. The Coalition For A Safe Berkeley is community group with members affiliated with the ACLU, National Lawyers Guild, the NAACP, the Berkeley Peace and Justice Commission, as well as other Berkeley residents. The Coalition is proposing distinct changes to the Berkeley Police Department's operational policies and mutual aid agreements. The proposals address profiling (religious, ethnic/racial, gender/sex, political, etc) as well as violations of privacy. The Coalition seeks to bolster the freedom of speech and assembly against intrusion and erosion by a police state. These proposals seek to decriminalize political protest, such as Occupy.
In light of the recent Berkeley police scandal involving the misuse of police resources on a non-violent protest, and the subsequent public outcry when it was learned the police department held an entire shift to monitor the march, changes need to be made to Berkeley PD's operation procedures and mutual aid agreements. Intelligence gathering was held sacrosanct over public safety and public trust. (The intelligence gathering by the police department didn't even field correct information.) The break in the public trust widened with a 12:45AM police visitation to a reporter. Furthermore, there still needs to be a public evaluation regarding the police's violent December dismantling of the encampment, including information table without city council consent.
The civil liberties of everyone are addressed by the proposals set forth by the Coalition For A Safe Berkeley. This is a community project beyond just Occupy. The Coalition is looking for community voices to express their views and experiences regarding the balance of public safety and public liberty.
[FROM THE COALITION FOR A SAFE BERKELEY]
STOP POLICE ABUSES, SPEAK UP NOW
WHAT: Public Meetings: Come to either or both of the PRC meetings listed below. There will be a time for public comment at the beginning of each meeting. Please contact the Coalition for a Safe Berkeley if you would like more information about giving public testimony or about the proposed policy changes.
WHEN: Wed. March 21, 6pm: Mutual Aid Subcommittee -- draft recommendations
Wed. March 28, 7pm: Full PRC meeting -- vote on recommendations to City Council
WHERE: PRC Meetings are held at the South Berkeley Senior Center, 2939 Ellis Street at Ashby
Written Testimony: If you prefer to submit written testimony, or would like to testify anonymously, contact us for help.
Coalition for a Safe Berkeley 510-525-5497 (English or Spanish) * 510-491-5273 (Spanish) * E-mail: nicca [at] igc.org
Berkeley’s Police Review Commission (PRC) is voting on proposals to strengthen civilian oversight of the Berkeley Policy Department, and to increase protections for our constitutional rights, including the freedom to protest, equal protection under the law, the rights of immigrants, freedom from profiling and police violence. Tell the PRC to stand up for Berkeley’s values.
If, either in Berkeley or in nearby communities, you have:
* Been arrested, mistreated, or harassed for expressing your politics or your beliefs, or for your activism;
* Been asked political, religious, or ethnic questions by a local or federal police officer;
* Had information about you shared from one police department to others, or to the federal government;
* Been threatened with deportation or had your family separated by ICE;
* Been mistreated by police from one city operating in another city:
The proposals include changes to the following mutual aid agreements:
Northern California Regional Intelligence Center (NCRIC), Department of Homeland Security, Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) Program, University of California Police Department (UCPD) operational agreement
The two proposed changes to Berkeley Police Department policies include:
Criminal Intelligence (General Order C-1), Jail Operations and Services to Outside Agencies (General Order J-1)