Color of Change Executive Director Rashad Robinson explains how his organization is working to end the controversial police tactic

Chris Williams

by Chris Williams, December 03, 2012


of the challenge is that the people affected by Stop and Frisk are not deemed as valuable by the media. Often times our corporate media has decided who is valuable. For instance, if White boys on the Upper West Side were being stopped and frisked on their way home from private school, we would have a ton of media coverage around Stop and Frisk. There would be a national outrage about it and we would be having all sorts of conversations probably at the same level when a young, White woman goes missing. The problem is that the folks who are being stopped and frisked aren’t deemed as valuable.∫

EBONY: What is Color of Change doing to fight Stop and Frisk?

RR: There are a couple of things we’re doing. One, we’ve done the traditional online organizing that we do around a lot of campaigns by getting folks from communities to sign petitions, but turn them out to rallies, which we’ve done in New York City. We’re getting them to reach out to their political representatives, to write letters to the editor and just a host of things to raise their voices around this issue. This is the first piece. The second piece is that the mayoral election in New York City is coming up in 2013. The Color of Change organization has nearly 40,000 members in New York City who will be doing a lot work to hold those candidates running to the fire on where they stand on Stop and Frisk, but holding whoever gets elected accountable on this issue. As well as putting support behind those folks who are on the right side of this issue. We’re also doing work with our coalition of local organizations throughout the city to support efforts around Cop Watch. They’ll be ensuring that folks who are doing Cop Watch are videotaping and tracking what is happening in their communities. They will be making sure they’re supported by technology and other resources to ensure that the videos they produce are moved quickly to the media.

Chris Williams is an internationally published writer. You can follow him on Twitter @CWmsWrites.

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