SEND A MESSAGE: Police power must be reined in
TAKE ACTION NOW
Communities across the country have responded to the recent deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Tony McDade, which are part of the ongoing and largely unaddressed problem of police abuse of power and use of excessive force, particularly against Black people.
As people took to the streets to exercise their First Amendment right to protest, we have witnessed police continue to abuse their power. In Alabama, peaceful protestors were tear gassed in Huntsville and Mobile, and met with an aggressive police response and arrested by the dozens in Birmingham. This weekend alone there were at least 23 protestors arrested in Hoover.
Instead of turning to police once again to enforce protest and movement restrictions, we call on city mayors across Alabama to recognize this moment as an opportunity to rein in the power of the police in order to address the ongoing problems within their respective police departments, made very evident this week.
Specifically, we call for the following:
- An end to curfews and other protest restrictions, which unnecessarily restrict our right to protest, and lead to increased community policing that adds further harm and trauma to already over-policed communities;
- An end to the use of rubber bullets, tear gas, riot gear, and other militarized tactics that cost exorbitant amounts of money to supply, cause excessive injury, and which research has shown does not de-escalate situations but instead increases the likelihood of disruption;
- An end to the use of custodial arrests against protesters to enforce movement restrictions, particularly since booking people into jail during a public health pandemic causes increased risk of COVID-19 spread for both the jail population and the communities those released return to;
- An end to the over-funding of police departments, who spend millions of taxpayer dollars on ineffective methods that do not decrease crime or increase safety.
We call on all in Alabama who support justice to unite now in demanding urgent and meaningful action regarding police abuse of power. Take action now and tell your mayor you support reining in the power of the police.
Mayors of Alabaster, Auburn, Birmingham, Daphne, Decatur, Dothan, Florence, Gadsden, Hoover, Huntsville, Madison, Mobile, Montgomery, Opelika, Prattville, Tuscaloosa, and Vestavia Hills.