Join Us for On-line Presentation: Local Surveillance -- what it does to us and how we can oppose it

We are organizing an online presentation for MF/PL members and friends July 12 and 3:00 pm Eastern U.S. time about:

Local Surveillance – what it does to us and how we can oppose it

This is the registration link:

There will be presentations from local organizers working on this issue and plenty of time for questions. Save the date and time!

It’s a kind of kick-off to a larger, broader and longer campaign May First is helping organize around surveillance at the international, national and local levels. Our presenters are:

Hamid Khan – Stop LAPD Spying Coalition
Dennis Flores – El Grito de Sunset Park
Jacobo Najera –May First/People Link - Mexico
Manisha Desai – May First/People Link and University of Connecticut

While the bulk of the attention by movements for change is on national privacy and surveillance policies, we too often tend to ignore a much closer and more disturbing threat: local police surveillance.

In most major cities, we are under almost constant surveillance: street cameras, police surveillance equipment, spy cams in stores and other frequented places, capture of data and email, capture of cellphone data. Most of us know this and, because it’s become a way of life, we tolerate it.

But what many people don’t realize is that the data captured is used in all kinds of repressive ways: in criminal investigations and arrests, in damaging reputations (as was the case with Michael Brown), in refusing people employment, in affecting school applications, impacting on government and public assistance.

What’s more it’s shared with authorities nationwide, including federal authorities (like the NSA), through data sharing agreements and “fusion centers” (dedicated to facilitating the combining and sharing of local, state and federal information on people).

This is a profile of a police state and it’s real. But there’s a flip side. The most aggressive and impassioned opposition to surveillance is taking place in local struggles all over the country in cities like New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago and so many others: grassroots organizations in cities and towns that are taking this issue on.

On July 12, we are bringing together several people who lead local struggles against surveillance in U.S. and Mexican cities to talk about it and address those questions: what it means to us and how do we oppose it?

This is for all May First members and your friends. We’ll get a registration process up on line next week. Question?

Again, the link: