UPDATE ON THE VOTE FROM THE STOP URBAN SHIELD COALITION!
When: June 20th, 6pm
Where: Longfellow Middle School (1500 Derby St, Berkeley)
After postponing the vote several times, Berkeley City Council will be holding a special hearing on Tuesday, June 20th focused specifically on Berkeley's participation in Urban Shield, the Northern California Regional Information Center (NCRIC, a fusion center based in the Bay Area) and Berkeley's purchase of an armored vehicle. These are all controversial and harmful policing and surveillance tools that are deployed in our communities and the we oppose. They do not support community preparedness for crisis events.
Check out this video on our facebook for more information about Urban Shield - https://www.facebook.com/
As momentum for a 'No' vote grows, contact the Berkeley City Council and tell them to vote no on Urban Shield, militarized policing and surveillance tools.
"Dear Councilmember ______________,
I am writing to urge you and all Berkeley City Council members to take leadership in putting an end to Berkeley's engagement in the militarization of police and disaster preparedness represented by the annual Urban Shield exercises and weapons expo, funded by DHS through the Urban Areas Security Initiative. Urban Shield’s emphasis on SWAT teams as the response to emergencies - including natural disasters - as well as extremely militarized scenarios, diminishes resources for responding to the ordinary emergencies community members face every day. Especially with the harms we've seen from the Trump administration, Berkeley should not be participating in war games funded by the Department of Homeland Security, which involve not only Bay Area counties, but teams from around the United States.That is why I ask you to exercise your leadership and end all of Berkeley's participation in Urban Shield, reject any future funding from UASI, and stand with Berkeley communities and people across the country."
Email Council at council [at] cityofberkeley.inf
Mayor Jesse Arreguin / (510) 981-7100
District 1 / Linda Maio / (510) 981-7110
District 2 / Cheryl Davila / (510) 981-7120
District 3 / Ben Bartlett / (510) 981-7130
District 4 / Kate Harrison / (510) 981-7140
District 5 / Sophie Hahn / 510) 981-7150
District 6 / Susan Wengraf / (510) 981-7160
District 7 / Kris Worthington / (510) 981- 7170
District 8 / Lori Droste / (510) 981-7180
Please stay tuned for more information on the promised vote and how to mobilize and/or support.
[May 16 2017]
Since 2013, we've been resisting Urban Shield, the largest SWAT training in the the world. Today, more and more people have come to see this "preparedness exercise" for what it really is: a racist carnival of repression that has no place in the future we deserve.
That’s why we need you now. Tomorrow, the Berkeley City Council will vote on whether to pull out of the upcoming Urban Shield (and the DHS funding program, UASI, which keeps it afloat). For the first time in years, we are close to cutting ties with militarism, and building momentum for other cities around the Bay Area, and the country, to follow suit. Stand with the Stop Urban Shield coalition + act today!
3 THINGS YOU CAN DO
1. Bay Area folks: Attend tomorrow night's 7PM PST Berkeley City Council meeting and give public comment (talking points will be provided)
2. Everyone outside of the Bay Area: Personally customize the template below in emails to the following decision makers:
Mayor Jesse Arreguin: mayor [at] CityofBerkeley.info
Council Member (District 1) Linda Miao: lmaio [at] CityofBerkeley.info
Council Member (District 3) Ben Bartlett: bbartlett [at] CityofBerkeley.info
Council Member (District 5) Sophie Hahn: shahn [at] CityofBerkeley.info
Council Member (District 7) Kris Worthington: kworthington [at] CityofBerkeley.info
"Dear Mayor/Councilperson _________,
Though I do not live in Berkeley, I am writing to urge you, and all Berkeley City Council members, to end Berkeley's involvement in Urban Shield. Please take national leadership in putting an end to Berkeley's engagement with the militarization of police and disaster preparedness represented by this notorious SWAT training and weapons expo. Urban Shield’s emphasis on SWAT teams as the go-to response to emergencies - including natural disasters - as well as its hyper-militarized scenarios, diminishes our resources for responding to the ordinary emergencies community members face every day. Berkeley should not be participating in war games funded by the Department of Homeland Security's Urban Areas Security Initiative, which involve not only nine Bay Area counties, but teams from around the United States, and globally. That is why I ask you to exercise your leadership and prohibit Berkeley's participation in Urban Shield, and to stand with Alameda County communities, and people across the country such as myself!
3. Call Berkeley City Council members using above template:
Mayor Jesse Arreguin/ (510) 981-7100
District 1/ Linda Miao/(510) 981-7110
District 2/ Cheryl Davila/ (510) 981-7120
District 3/ Ben Bartlett/ (510) 981-7130
District 4/ Kate Harrison / (510) 981-7140
District 5/ Sophie Hahn/ 510) 981-7150
District 6/ Susan Wengraf / (510) 981-7160
District 7/ Kris Worthington / (510) 981-7170
District 8/ Lori Droste / (510) 981-7180
4. Spread messages of support with #StopUrbanShield on your social media platforms today + tomorrow (use any of these images)
Over 100 SWAT raids happen every day across the US, and trainings like Urban Shield provide the arms, mentalities and justification for militarized violence on our communities. Say no to SWAT and yes to resources where we need them: community needs! Let’s set off a tidal wave of concrete wins against militarism: starting with Berkeley!