Dear friends, check out some of the work we’ve been doing!
This past weekend, our comrade Ni held two exciting art-filled activities. On Saturday 1/29, Ni led a political art-making session with Roosevelt High School Students, using LAPD mission sheets. The students were focused on the LAPD LASER program and how it targeted their communities in Boyle Heights.
On Sunday 1/30, Ni led a virtual art-making session to create artwork for a potential action around the upcoming Targeted Violence and Terrorism Prevention grant awarded to the LAPD. The grant is headed to the City Council for an upcoming vote. Check out our organizational sign-on letter rejecting TVTP at tinyurl.com/RejectTVTP. Additionally, you can sign and share our petition rejecting TVTP at tinyurl.com/RejectTVTPPetition.
On Tuesday’s (2/1) monthly Gender and Sexuality webinar discussed the criminalization of Sex Work, and how upcoming events like the Super Bowl and the 2028 Olympics further escalate state violence against sex workers. Coalition member, Kim, led a brilliant presentation and discussion on what sex work is and the history of its criminalization. Tiff discussed some of the more recent efforts by LAPD to target sex workers under the guise of preventing sex trafficking. The US PROS Collective shared their organizing efforts and the symposium they have organized on Feb 9th to address policing and various other forms of dehumanization sex workers face every day. Our comrades from NOlympics provided some history about how the LAPD targeted sex workers during the 1984 Olympics, highlighting how these large events escalate the violence against sex workers.
Thursday (2/3), the Coalition met with Michael of Black Lives Matter – Los Angeles to discuss the ongoing work being done in Pasadena to combat the growth of Pasadena PD’s surveillance state. Last year, the City of Pasadena approved and entered a 3-year contract with ShotSpotter. ShotSpotter markets itself as a surveillance system that uses sensors, software, and AI to locate gunshots in communities. However, research shows that the software only serves to further criminalize Black and Brown communities. Michael has been leading the fight against ShotSpotter in Pasadena and has been meeting with the Coalition to discuss ways that we can support this effort.
Later that day, the Coalition met to review the documents we received through a PRA (Public Records Act) uncovering information about the LAPD’s Shadow Teams. Shadow Teams were used during the 2020 summer uprisings to infiltrate protests and criminalize resistance. The LAPD discusses the use of Shadow Team’s further in their After-Action Implementation Plan in response to the 2020 uprisings, normalizing the usage of these teams to infiltrate protests and squash dissent.
On Friday (2/4), our Defund Surveillance team met to continue researching the Budget docs the Coalition won in a lawsuit against the city. The Defund Surveillance team analyzes these budget documents to better understand how LAPD is using it’s ever ballooning budget to expand the police state. The Coalition is continuing to build power against the proposed LAPD budget, which demands an increase of $213M.
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