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Dear friends, check out some of the work we have been doing!

On Sunday, May 1st, the Coalition supported LA CAN’s Women’s Wellness Retreat. We’re so glad to have been a part of such an incredible day. A special congratulations to Monique and Jamie Rae, co-coordinators of Sunday’s festivities, for successfully organizing this beautiful event.

Earlier on Tuesday (5/3), the Coalition participated in a UC Divest action alongside SJP-UCLA, PYM, and other powerful youth organizers to demand that UCLA divest from policing and military occupation. Akhil from our War on Youth work group spoke about how modern local policing is developed through global counterinsurgency efforts. He also raised some examples of how Academia sanitizes and bolsters these practices by developing new research and technology to make these practices more palatable and efficient.

Tuesday’s (5/3) webinar Gender and Sexuality, facilitated by our coordinating team members Ni and Kim was primarily an internal strategy building session where we reviewed our public records request (PRA) the Coalition has submitted. The PRA was guided by the work of US PROS and SWOP-LA, whom the Coalition has been working closely with. We collectively mapped out our fights and campaigns and discussed what next steps we want to take to build power against the criminalization of sex-workers. 

On Wednesday (5/4) the Coalition was present for the first in-person City Hall meeting since its closure in March 2020. In the days leading up to the city council meeting, the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition had announced a public records lawsuit against City Councilman Paul Koretz over his refusal to respond to our requests for his communications with the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a nonprofit that works closely with surveillance agencies. Prior to the meeting’s commencement, Ricci Sergienko of the People’s City Council, attempted to serve Councilmember Koretz’s office, however Koretz staffer David Hersch refused to accept service. Ricci once again attempted to serve Koretz during public comment but was met with an uncooperative Koretz. Service was accepted by the City Attorney’s office. 

Also on Wednesday, the Coalition conducted outreach on behalf of LA CAN in Gladys park. We distributed clothing, razors, sanitary napkins, and tooth brushes much to the dismay of Council District 14 staffer, Christopher Antonelli who repeatedly tried to have us removed from the park. Our resources stood in stark contrast to the CD 14 table which provided mugs and nothing else.

On Thursday (5/5) the Coalition announced yet another lawsuit against the LAPD! The Coalition held a press conference announcing our newest lawsuit confronting LAPD’s refusal to identify surveillance cameras supposedly monitoring all activity in Echo Park Lake.

These cameras expand LAPD’s architecture of surveillance, generating data for facial recognition and predictive policing. This police militarization of the park is part of the settler state’s efforts to gentrify Echo Park and displace longtime residents.

Speakers included:

–  Michael Shields, a community resident organizing to remove the fence around Echo Park Lake

– Gustavo, an Echo Park Lake resident evicted during last year’s violent sweeps.

– The Coalition’s community attorney Shakeer Rahman and Omar El-Quoolaq, co-counsel on this lawsuit.

– Ni Anaya, community organizer for the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition. 

The press conference gained national media attention, being featured twice on National Public Radio.

To plug in with any of the work groups listed above, or for more information about the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition, email us at [email protected]. If you or your organization are interested in hosting a teach-in or discussion regarding our report please fill out this google form.