Friday, September 9, 2016

23 Arrested, Hundreds Rally to Stop Urban Shield and Police Militarization

Twenty-three activists were arrested at the Alameda County Fairgrounds today in a mass mobilization with the Stop Urban Shield Coalition in Pleasanton. Over 500 activists rallied to protest police militarization. Urban Shield, with the motto "Intense Training for Intense Times" and hosted by the Alameda County Sheriff's Office, is a controversial, weekend long event gathering hundreds of local, federal and international law enforcement agencies. Urban Shield advertises itself as a full-scale regional disaster preparedness training. Protesters say it's a weekend of highly militarized war games, SWAT training and a weapons expo that shares and normalizes policing tactics that will be used on communities of color and the poor. In 2014, Urban Shield was moved out of Oakland following intense criticism, and protesters mobilized from around the state today to shut the event down completely.

Reported by Corinne Smith