Oakland, March 27th 2018 – In a historic move, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors just voted to end Urban Shield after 2018, the world’s largest militarized SWAT training and weapons expo. The vote was applauded by community members and organizations.
“Urban Shield would be ended it as we know it” after this year said Supervisor Carson, who put forward the motion to end the program after this year’s event takes place, which succeeded in a 4-1 vote. Supervisors Chan, Valle, and Miley supported the motion, with Supervisor Haggerty being the only no vote. Carson’s motion succeeded after an initial motion by Chan to end Urban Shield in 2018 failed in a 3-2 vote.
“After years of tireless organizing and raising widespread community opposition to police militarization and racism, we consider this a huge victory for our communities,” said Sharif Zakout of the Arab Resource and Organizing Center and member of the Stop Urban Shield. “Although we would have liked to see Urban Shield ended immediately, having an end to Urban Shield after this year reflects a significant shift in how the Bay Area can be better prepared for emergencies and disasters in ways that are not based on militarization.”
The Stop Urban Shield is committed to seeing this decision through, and to working with communities and decision makers to build up the resources and programs that strengthen community based emergency preparedness not tied to militarized policing.