Racism in Policing: A Guided Course by the ACLU

Want to Know More About Police, Race, and the Calls to Divest?

The systemic issues inherent in American policing are nothing new. While everyone deserves to feel safe in their own community, we know Black people in our country have been terrorized and killed at the hands of the police for centuries. It’s a reality that has led millions to finally follow the lead of Black organizers and Black-led grassroots groups by calling for change that goes beyond mere reform: to divest from police as an institution and invest in community-based, life-affirming programs and solutions.

These are the issues the ACLU invites you to explore in our inaugural email course, “Racism in Policing” – a four-lesson series taught by our experts and sent to your inbox every week.

What Will You Learn?

In four weekly emails, you will gain a foundational knowledge around the critical issues of U.S. policing, its inseparable ties to systemic racism, and solutions for change. Here’s a lesson breakdown:

  • Week 1: What is police divestment?
  • Week 2: Why is police militarization prominent in the U.S.?
  • Week 3: Who disciplines police in the U.S.?
  • Week 4: Why are communities over-policed – and can it change?

At the end of the course, expect to come away with answers to these questions – as well as historical context, learning resources, and the insight needed to take action. Download the full syllabus.

Who Are Your Teachers?

Paige Fernandez (she/her/hers) is the Policing Policy Advocate in the ACLU’s National Political Advocacy Department. Paige develops and implements comprehensive strategies that advance the ACLU’s affirmative vision for reducing the role, power, presence, and responsibilities of the police in U.S. communities. She also develops and leads nationwide advocacy around police practices. She has co-founded and directed multiple chapters of Together We Stand, a nonprofit aimed at dismantling racism, discrimination, and police brutality, and has a master’s degree in Public Policy from Oxford University and a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College.

Carl Takei (he/him/his) is a senior staff attorney at the ACLU’s Trone Center for Justice and Equality where he litigates police practices, advances the ACLU’s affirmative vision for reducing the role, power, presence, and responsibilities of police in communities, and coordinates policing-related litigation and advocacy across multiple fronts. Carl has served as a staff attorney/Tony Dunn Foundation law fellow at the ACLU of the Nation’s Capital and a law clerk for the U.S. District Judge Paul Barbadoro in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire and holds a J.D., magna cum laude, from Boston College Law School and an A.B. from Brown University.

Join Paige and Carl by signing up for the email course today.

What does police divestment actually entail? Is this level of transformational change possible? Sign up for our four-lesson guided email course to explore these questions and more.