• #FrankRizzoDown
    Frank Rizzo was a Philadelphia police commissioner, from April 10, 1967- February 2, 1971. He was also the 119th Mayor of Philadelphia, from January 3, 1972 - January 7, 1980. Rizzo was an unrepentant racist who stopped at nothing to torture and hold Philadelphia's African-American community as his personal hostages. Rizzo used his authority to stop resistance against racist and unconstitutional injustices by using attack dogs on African-American college students as they protested on Temple University's campus. He consolidated his powers of abuse as a former officer and then police Commissioner in the City of Philadelphia, while his brother, James Rizzo, was the city's Fire Departments Chief. The police and fire departments were highly segregated, and allowed racism to take fold and shape. While claiming to implement Affirmative Action as a way to end racial discrimination, these institutions were used to promote anti-black violence against the African American community. Rank and file officers were used to implement harsh punishments, brutal beatings, cover-ups, deception, internal crime, turf drops (the body-snatching and dumping of black "suspects" in racist white communities, which subjected them to violent attacks from that community) and racially profiled stop-and-frisks that continue to stain our communities in contemporary times. Frank Rizzo's racist relationship towards Philadelphia's African-American community has always been one of violence, devastation and despair. Two of his most violent legacies to date involve members of Philadelphia's local chapter of the Black Panther Party being publicly stripped. The display of their naked bodies appeared on the Daily News' front page in August 1970, while the organization was preparing for a Peoples Revolution Convention to address police violence in the city and throughout the country. The forceful eviction of the MOVE family from their home in 1978 is another one of Rizzo's racist legacies. The city waged a violent attack against the MOVE family, which led to the framing of the MOVE 9. As a result, Delbert Africa was brutally beaten. Images from the period show Delbert being dragged by his hair, being kicked and punched by the Philadelphia Police Department, as well as being struck with an officer's helmet. This incident of racist violence has left the MOVE 9 incarcerated for over thirty years, and not one local governmental official has been held accountable. Frank Rizzo publicly made racist comments about Philadelphia's African-American communities; he openly used the term "niggers" when referencing black Philadelphians. Rizzo actively supported the historically racist views, values, and practices of Philadelphia's Police Department, which has left a lasting legacy of brutality and violence against the African American citizens of the city. Frank Rizzo's abuse of the African-American community was supported by Richard Nixon, despite Rizzo being investigated by the Civil Rights Commission, regarding complaints involving police brutality. The removal of this statue would be the first step in acknowledging Rizzo's crimes against the African-American community. It would be a much needed step towards truth and reconciliation, and holding police accountable for misconduct. This is something that is long overdue in this city. The removal of the Rizzo statue would also remove the constant reminder that our city actively supported a racist demagogue and then immortalized him as someone worthy of honor. The black community would rather see representations of the great contributions made by African Americans and other people of color to this city's development. These statues should be erected in place of the constant representations of Christopher Columbus, war heroes, Frank Rizzo and others who have held communities of color in subjugation. We will no longer allow our taxes and other city resources to be used to erect and maintain monuments of white supremacist figures.
    3,693 of 4,000 Signatures
    Created by Erica Mines Picture
  • Tell the Federal Government: Create an Interagency Task Force to Hold Police Accountable!
    American politicians point to the Constitution as the standard -bearer of law and order, but as the 14th Amendment is (and has historically been) violated as pertains to the treatment of black, brown and poor people, it is important to point out that black, brown and poor people are being denied "due process of law." The impulsive shootings and killings of African Americans by police officers are a violation and represent actions of misconduct in direct opposition to the United States' June 12, 2013 claim to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Until the laws and policies of police departments across this nation change, laws which in effect protect law enforcement officers regardless of evidence which has shown officers to be in the wrong, the indiscriminate killings of African Americans will continue. The killings themselves are repulsive and regrettable, but the fact that so few officers are held accountable when evidence shows them to be guilty, adds to the mental distress and emotional trauma of family members who are left to deal with both their grief and anger because of the lack of justice they receive. The trauma that African Americans have experienced because of excessive police force with little to no accountability has been proven to be genetically passed on, meaning that African Americans today are not only coping with present-day violations of their rights, but with the historic miscarriage and lack of justice which has been part of their narrative. We know that working to eliminate the trauma experienced by Black people in the United States is hard but we believe that establishing a task force, to police the police, will help. Please join us in demanding the immediate establishment of this task force!
    2,102 of 3,000 Signatures
    Created by Samuel DeWitt Proctor Conference, Inc.
  • Fire Police Chief Charlie Beck for Leading the Most Murderous Police Force in the United States
    Hundreds of Black Lives Matter activists and allies have been sitting-in at Los Angeles City Hall since July 12, 2016, prompted by the ruling of the Los Angeles Police Commission that the killing of 30 year-old Black mother, Redel Jones, was “in policy.” Redel Jones, who stood 4'10" tall, was accused of stealing $80 with a kitchen knife from a local pharmacy on August 12, 2015. By witness accounts, she was running away from police when she was spotted in an alley and shot as she fled; her body laid on the pavement for hours and her family was not notified of her death for more than a week. Redel was the mother of a 7 year-old girl and a 13 year-old boy; her husband, Marcus Vaughn, travelled to Los Angeles by bus to be present for the ruling. Her family is still reeling from her death and outraged by the ruling. Sadly, Redel Jones is one in a long list of victims killed by the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). For the last three years, LAPD – under the “leadership” of police chief Charlie Beck – has killed more of its residents than any other law enforcement unit in the country, killing 21 in 2015 and 10 so far this year, many of whom were unarmed people of color and/or people with mental health challenges. With only one exception, the chief has refused to condemn the acts of officers who kill residents, fire/discipline them, or recommend them for criminal prosecution. Moreover, he has refused to release information to the families of victims, most recently with the in-custody death of Wakiesha Wilson, killed in an LAPD jail cell on Easter Sunday 2016. Beck is also on-record as referring to former LAPD chief Darryl Gates (who headed LAPD during the Rodney King era) as his mentor and role model. This is not who we want in charge of the police force. For more than a year, Black Lives Matter and ally groups have been calling upon the mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, to fire Chief Beck. Every moment that Beck remains in his post, brings grave danger for community residents.
    8,926 of 9,000 Signatures
    Created by Melina Abdullah Picture
  • Take the Pledge: We Are the Movement for Black Lives
    Guided by love, we continue to stand together for justice, human dignity and our shared goal of ending all forms of state violence against Black people. We organize, occupy, demonstrate, march and chant for a new future: A future we can be proud of. We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors, who fought for their freedom and ours. Like them, we want a world where our lives matter. We want an end to the war being waged on Black people, in all its forms. Some people fear change, and that's ok. Many will attempt to halt our progress. That is not ok. Some will continue their attempts to undermine us, but we will remain undeterred. For far too long, our unjust deaths have meant business as usual in this country. No more. Our work remains undone until our lives are free of violence. That is the future we imagine. Until that day comes: We pledge togetherness--- we will not allow ourselves to be divided. We pledge to allow our thinking and actions to be guided by love. We pledge to bring courage and power into our communities, and stop their flow out. We pledge not to be controlled by fear, but instead by our dreams. Join us, and pledge to do the same: Stand with the Movement for Black Lives.
    44,817 of 45,000 Signatures
    Created by The Movement for Black Lives Picture
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Zeta Phi Beta
    I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance.
    14 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Mary B. Wright
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Sigma Gamma Rho
    I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. While some have labeled these unfortunate encounters “Blue on Black Crimes”, and point to UVA student Martese Johnson as an example, facts demonstrate that around the country many whites and Hispanics have also encounter such incidents. The death of John Geer in Fairfax is one that is noted. These senseless deaths and encounters must stop. Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance.
    6 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Bonita M. Herring
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Phi Beta Sigma
    I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance.
    8 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Jonathan A. Mason
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Iota Phi Theta
    I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance.
    7 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Robert Clark
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Alpha Kappa Alpha
    I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance.
    7 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Dorothy Buckhanan Wilson
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Kappa Alpha Psi
    I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance.
    8 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Thomas L. Battles, Jr.
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Alpha Kappa Alpha
    Dear Senator [FIRST1 LAST1] and [FIRST2 LAST2], My name is [YOUR NAME]. I live in [CITY, STATE], and I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. While some have labeled these unfortunate encounters “Blue on Black Crimes”, and point to UVA student Martese Johnson as an example, facts demonstrate that around the country many whites and Hispanics have also encounter such incidents. The death of John Geer in Fairfax is one that is noted. These senseless deaths and encounters must stop. [THESE EXAMPLES ARE FROM VIRGINIA DISCUSS LOCAL EXAMPLES] Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. [1] Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. Deaths in the hands of law enforcement during the aforementioned time period totaled 2,026. [CLARIFY STATISTIC] In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance. [1] Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics
    6 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Johnny Mathias
  • Support The Safer Officers And Safer Citizens Act Of 2015 with Delta Sigma Theta
    I am writing to urge you to support S.1897, the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015. I know this bill has the potential to save not only my life, but also those of my family, friends, and neighbors. Senators, my entire community can benefit from this bill, which is why I cannot overstate its importance. The bill, as drafted by the National Bar Association and supported by the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., will help to prevent some of the unnecessary confrontations that occur when unarmed citizens- both Black and white- are being detained and arrested by law enforcement officers. Between 2003 and 2009, 4,813 people died while in police custody or in the process of being arrested. Proportionally, African-Americans and other minorities take a heavy toll in many of these incidents. However, it should be noted that whites too experience ill consequences while being arrested and are at risk of losing their lives. In a study done in California in 2012, body cameras resulted in a 60% reduction in use of force, and an 88% decline in the number of complaints against officers. In closing, I urge you to support this legislation and to bring the powers of your office to bear. With your help, we can end this senseless violence and death at the hand of law enforcement. Our society and our judicial community is better than this and we must work together to end this vicious cycle of violence. Our communities are begging for your assistance.
    9 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Dr Paulette C. Walker, Ed.D.