POLICE: Who do you protect? Who do you serve? Certainly not folks experiencing mental illness…
In Sacramento, we have seen multiple times this past year where cops have responded to mental health crises with defense and rage, which resulted in deaths of community members at the hands of law enforcement. With Dazion Flenaugh and Joseph Mann who were killed by Sacramento Police Department, and Jason King who was killed by CHP in North Highlands, and Logan Ron Augustine who was killed by Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, the numbers continue to grow as police prove that they are incapable of responding to mental health crises, and also lacking heart and care for protecting and serving the most vulnerable people in our community.
People who are experiencing a mental health crisis or illness deserve the MOST compassion. They deserve to be placed at the center of our community, with tons of resources, love and support. Why is this not happening? Why are cops killing people in their most desperate of situations? And WHY are we, the people, relying on the cops during these moments? We are told that if someone is experiencing a mental health crisis, their only way to get the “help” they need is by calling law enforcement to do an assessment and place that person on a 5150 hold. Instead, cops have been militarized and trained to respond on the defense. Cops assume that every person, especially a black person, is armed and dangerous. Cops kill. Cops do not help.
And there is NO ACCOUNTABILITY. Just three weeks ago, Mayor Steinberg gave Sacramento Police Department $750,000 for training on this issue. MONEY. Yes, they get money when they kill people. While simultaneously, being paid and funded to attend militarization trainings that contradict the very training of responding to mental health crises. FUCK TRAINING, we need accountability! And Sacramento County District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert lets cops off time and time again. How backwards is this bull shit?!
Here is what we must do:
FIRE THE COPS.
Literally, fire the killer cops. Then WE, the people, have to stop calling cops to solve our problems! Name one time a cop has prevented a “problem” or actually helped a situation. At Community Alternatives to Police monthly community meetings, hosted by BLM Sacramento, we hear a common theme: cops do not help. In fact, most people report that cops made situations worse, or even respond with aggression and threats to the very person/people who called on them for help. We have to know EVERY time we call the cops, the results are terrible, the results are heart wrenching, the results are DEATH. Do not call the cops for help!! As a community, we can take care of one another. We can solve our own problems. BLM Sacramento is working on finding more community-based solutions. Come out to our next Community Alternatives to Police forum on Saturday, February 11th at 6pm at the Colonial Heights Library. Also, show up to protest the fuck out of the militarization of law enforcement agencies in Sacramento on February 21st and 22nd.
Our community is rich with love, resources and power. We MUST take back our communities, our resources and our power.
It is our duty to fight for our freedom.
It is our duty to win.
We MUST love and support one another.
We have nothing to lose but our chains!