How-To Organize A DiscoTech - if you'd like to organize your own event, start by making a copy of theCountersurveillance Hackathon Event Template. Then, fill in the details of your venue and agenda, you'll easily fill in the structure of the event. Handy descriptions exist through the template. Also, let us know if you organize an event so we can add it to the event announcements!
email@example.comWe kick off with a round of introductions, then Puck Lo reads to us a story about the background of SoMove. [see if this is published online somewhere?] Puck provides background re: global justice movement, indymedia, information and activism.
Next Puck talks about the Giovanni's Room project. Giovanni's Room was a Gay bookstore in Philly. When it closed, there was little coverage of it. SoMove interviewed people about their connection to the store, and Puck plays clips of voices from this important element of queer history.
Neo's working with the codesign class to help with design and development of codesign projects. Neo's going to be providing some development and design time, it's much shorter than a normal engagement but it'll be enough time to do something. To arrange things we need to know what the needs and state of the project is for everybody.
Needs: UI / UX work for mobile UI for the android app to show IMSI catchers.
Elizabeth CRestorative justice: Healing communities, talking about schools as communities
Working on changing the MOU
Over 1700 schools, largest school district
Parents say "remove bad kid from community so my kid can learn" - but educators and legislators should be held accountable
More emphasis in criminalization of students than development
Aditi MQuestion: Can you talk about what friends and allies you help shape the issue in DeBlasio's campaign?
Becky HA: DeBlasio publicly committed to eliminating some things including suspensions for willful denial (?), where we saw racial disparity very clearly. The new head of the department of education announced that she will be looking at the racial disparities in push out and discipline.
It's been harder to work on our MOU campaign because the city is not ready to talk about removing NYPD from schools, even limiting the NYPD in schools. There's still a narrative that the streets are dangerous, schools are dangerous, black and brown kids are dangerous.
June, the public process starts for changing the discipline code and in Aug it will be finished. We're more hopeful for that piece than the youth piece.
Aditi MQuestion: Are students taught to do something specific if the police are after them or are unjustly harassing them?
Becky HA: Where you can record a stop and frisk and police in the street, young people don't have access to that in the schools. Right now, if there is harassment from a safety officer in the schools, you have to report to internal affairs in the NYPD. We don't want it to work that way. We see that young people who do report, or parents who report for their students get a lot of backlash from officers. The most that has happened to a safety officer is that they get moved to another school.
They want it to be a third party, not cops holding cops accountable, for real, does not happen.
firstname.lastname@example.orgPrinciples have no control over hiring or firing school safety, instead that happens through police academy.
They do know your rights training, but in the middle of a conflict, that may not matter: if the officer ignores it.
Question (Sean): the heightening of security in schools is a national issue, do you work with groups like yours in other cities?
A: We're part of the national Alliance for Educational Justice. There are 27 organizations, we're always growing. NYC, Philly, Boston, Denver, Oakland, LA, Wichita, Chicago. A lot of powerful youth organizations across the country. We joined AEJ b/c of federal trend, and also b/c NCLB was going to be reauthorized. We have national demands around school safety, redistributing funds for counselors as opposed to cops, eliminating out of school suspension. Pushing a statewide bill, Illinois has a statewide bill. Tackling statewide policy in hopes of later pushing to federal legislation.
Aditi MQuestion: What is the final objective? To get police out of the school or to just be involved in a process? When do you declare victory?
Becky HA: When all students are safe! The conversation around what does a victory look like - we know this has been a multi-year fight. What I would consider a victory is removing NYPD from schools, limiting police in schools, and a positive school culture that promotes education and careers.
email@example.comWhy can't schools hire their own security guards, not NYPD, trained in de-escalation, part of a community, working to create safe school cultures?
Becky HThe second piece is to create restorative schools. The concept of restorative justice, comes from indigenous communities that believe in healing and accountability in real ways. When we're 14, 15, 16, our brains are still developing, why would we charge ourselves as adults?
We don't talk about what the physical environment looks like: cameras, metal detectors, barbed wire, hallway sweeps.
Becky HQuestion: What is the most important piece for you, from the work this term? Incident reporting, informaiton sharing, what's at the core of what you want to have come out of this project? Is
Answer: Combination of data-collecting, so we can see where there's a need for organizing. We hear on the ground what young people are saying, but there's no way to capture the day to day of what is happening to young people. We can't have access to this, even the data we get is limited because of federal protection of information, which is an excuse.
Surveys so they can share their daily experience. The sharing of stories to build bases, young people to get them to organize. I was hoping for something like the Stop and Frisk app, but that's really hard. Knowing where there is a need to organize and using the stories and information that comes out of that to build relationships and start organizing.
Q: What do you currently do to gather that information?
A: The membership, and the local orgs, and the schools, do that. We're not in Harlem, El Barrio, Chinatown, a lot of communities where folks look like us, but there's not a lot of organizing around school safety or youth organizing. We want to be able to capture neighborhoods we're not in already because we need to be there.
Q: The campaigns now, how are they sending their messages? Rallies, twitter hashtags, how?
A: Our young people write op eds and we get them published; we're doing a better job around social media, engaging in conversations with everyone - mayor's office, influential people and have had a lot of conversations; there's a barrier to the stories we can share. We've experienced a lot of backlash when we share particular stories about young poeple -- none of the storeis are clean, they are complicated. A lot of times there is responsibility on the student. We also message it -- adults need to react like adults, not in abusive ways when young people act out.
We have heard that schools have found out that students have reported stories and schools are harder on them and that school security forces beat up young people for reporting incidents. We have had media outlets researching yong people and exposing that some of our young people have citations or warnings. We are cautious about sharing because of potential backlash.
A: we've been around since 97; organization is fluid and changes; we have organizaitonal and members around the country. We have a list serve, not just members, where peple interact; regular member calls where people interact quarterly; upmcoming conference 250 people; we do trainings, strategy sessions.
Our membership - legal service providers, grassroots orgs, youth based orgs, advocacy orgs, visitation program; people who are impacted; started with a lot of legal advocates and has shifted to grassroots groups too.
Q: How do you connect with people?
A: snail mail, email, talks, presentations, collaborating with members, and supporting them; as far as member comms, we're known for our list serve (high traffic), mass mailings, e-newsletters.
in terms of folks who don't know about hte issue we probabaly don't reach a lot of folks who don't know about hte issue. We try to funnel things out through our membership.
Sean FBrainstorm and discuss the following questions and record your thoughts on the Hackpad below:
Source: DWN’s Expose and Close One Year Later Report
“We have been given in our food trays expired juices, apples with worms in them, Jell-O that tastes like soap, left overs cooked differently up to three times in one week, but the worst was on August 18, 2013, for dinner we were served ground turkey meat, but the meat was so badly spoiled, a very foul smell spread all over the dorm. It was so bad, some gagged at the smell, others almost threw up when they notice maggots in the meat.”
Immigrant detained at Adelanto Detention Facility, California
“The day we arrived at [the facility] they had us without clothes, naked for two days, officials would enter the room and they would laugh at us.”