Document 335000

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE LOCAL GROUP WORKS TO PUT BODYCAMS ON BOSTON POLICE OFFICERS BY 2016. Contact: Segun Idowu Co-­‐organizer [email protected] Shekia Scott Co-­‐organizer [email protected]
October 9, 2014 – (Boston) The Boston Police Camera Action Team (BPCAT), formed in early August as a response to the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO, has made a formal announcement of its organization and intent. BPCAT’s mission is “to further accountability and safety in the city of Boston through the mandatory use of police bodycams.” The group is working with Boston residents and other organizations to research, draft and present policy to, as well as lobby, the Boston City Council, the Mayor and the police department to support its goal. This announcement comes on the heels of an ACLU report entitled, Black, Brown and Targeted (October 2014). The report details significant racial desparities in police-­‐civilian interactions and highlights, in the opinion of BPCAT, the need for bodycameras on Boston’s police officers. Members of BPCAT have canvassed large segments of Boston’s neighborhoods, listening to and compiling stories from residents who feel they have been wrongfully targeted by Boston police officers due to their race, background and other factors. These stories will be part of a larger campaign to garner community and political support. When asked why this group was created, Segun Idowu, one of the co-­‐organizers of BPCAT, said, “I was tired of having the same conversations about the same tragedies and coming up with the same solutions. I decide it was time to not just do something, but something that mattered.” “We had to act now,” said Shekia Scott, the other co-­‐organizer of BPCAT. “I refuse to let Boston become the next Ferguson.” BPCAT has spent the last month building relationships with local groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Harvard Black Law Student Association(HBLSA) and Digital Fourth, to name a few, and has spent that same time devising two sets of policy initiatives and social media campaigns. Over time, it will be presenting these policies to City Councilors, the Mayor and top-­‐ranking officials within the police department. [email protected]