It’s been a little over three years since we came together to stop the DAC – the surveillance octopus Orwellingly named the Domain Awareness Center.
Out of that effort came the establishment of the Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission by the Oakland City Council. One of its mandates was to propose an ordinance to regulate all uses of surveillance equipment by the City of Oakland, including and especially by OPD.
The ordinance the Commission has crafted, approved unanimously in January, is now up for consideration by the Oakland City Council. It will first be taken up by the Council’s Public Safety Committee on May 9th, 2017 at 6:00 PM at Oakland City Hall – THIS IS A CRUCIAL HEARING.
We need and would very much like you to send a simple letter of support for the ordinance to City Council members. You can do that easily by using this web tool to send a note:
Calling is an excellent idea as well. Here are the phone numbers for the four City Council members who sit on the Public Safety Committee:
Noel Gallo, District 5, (510) 238-7005
Abel Guillen, District 2, (510) 238-7002
Larry Reid, District 7, (510) 238-7007
Desley Brooks, District 8, (510) 238-7006
A suggested message:
“I strongly support the Privacy’s Commission’s Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance, coming before you on May 9th at Public Safety. Please vote to approve it!”
Here’s a brief summary of what the ordinance will require:
· Public hearings on every new gadget and computer program that can be used for surveillance or monitoring
· Approval or denial by vote of the Council on such equipment and software acquisition.
· Approval or denial by vote of the Council on any proposed information sharing with Federal agencies (e.g. ICE).
· Evaluation of civil rights concerns, and a cost/benefit analysis, BEFORE approval.
· Putting in place a privacy and use policy before any equipment or software can be deployed, specifying what it may – and may not – be used for, and how long any data it may gather may be kept.
· A public report every year on how and when the equipment or software has been used.
· Penalties for violations of the ordinance or a use policy.
This is a strong regulatory framework that will make sure that no unconstitutional or unwarranted surveillance is taking place in Oakland. We need your help to make sure it becomes law.
Please act now! tinyurl.com/kdjq6qh
This note was sent to you by the folks at Oakland Privacy.
You may also be interested in checking out the Oakland Privacy website,http://oaklandprivacy.org , which has information about our other projects fighting against the surveillance state.