Eye-opening analysis by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution was just released showing the deadly effects of militarized police. It’s yet another example of why passing the BREATHE Act is critical to acheiving safety for all communities, and especially for Black people. Have you told your crew about this critical legislation yet?
In an article written a few days ago, the AJC published data showing that police departments that receive military gear from the Department of Defense’s 1033 program are more likely to kill civilians.
The AJC found that
“the more equipment a department receives, the more people are shot and killed, even after accounting for violent crime, race, income, drug use and population.”
So what’s the 1033 program providing this dangerous equipment? Let me break it down.
The 1033 program is a program run by the Department of Defense that allows local police departments to easily obtain military-grade weapons and equipment. Basically, it gives the same gear to police that is intended to be used by soldiers in war zones.
The data just released show that the outcome of this program is disastrous.
“Departments that took more than $1,000 in 1033 money, on average, fatally shot about four times as many people as those that didn’t.”
What’s more, data shows that these weapons are not necessary to prevent violent crime.There is no relationship between the military gear and lower crime rates.
The BREATHE Act would end the 1033 program. That means no more weapons of war in our communities. Instead, if the BREATHE Act passes, we’ll have the funding and roadmaps to build the public safety systems that work for all of us regardless of what community we come from. Rather than spend money on programs that are devastating Black communities, BREATHE would make historic investments in housing, education, health, environmental justice, and the other things that will truly keep our communities safe.
We are so proud that you’ve decided to stand on the right side of history alongside us. So far, over 150,000 community sponsors have signed on in support of the BREATHE Act. But we’re not stopping there — we’re going to need all the support we can get.
M4BL is a national network of over 150 organizations creating a broad political home for Black people to learn, organize, and take action.
In July, we unveiled the BREATHE Act, a visionary federal Civil Rights bill that would divest from policing and invest in a new vision of public safety. For decades, the federal government has funded mass criminalization while underfunding social services that actually keep people safe. Black people and our allies are demanding a new approach. The BREATHE Act is an affirmative vision for our lives.TAKE ACTION TODAY »
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