RESOLUTION of the CFA-SFSU union local condemning systemic racism, particularly acts of police brutality, racial profiling, and the use of excessive and militarized force throughout the country and in the California State University System

Whereas, we hold the humanity and precious life of George Floyd in our hearts, and remember the long line of Black, Indigenous, Latinx and Asian and Pacific Islander  victims of racist violence; 

Whereas,  police brutality and the use of excessive and militarized force are among the most serious ongoing human rights and civil liberties violations in the United States and have led to community destabilization, a decrease in public safety, and the exacerbation of structural inequities; 

Whereas, the system of policing in America, and its systemic targeting of and use of deadly and brutal force against people of color, particularly Black people, stems from the long legacy of slavery, lynching, Jim Crow laws, and the War on Drugs in the United States and has been perpetuated by violent and harmful law enforcement practices; 

Whereas, contemporary police practices that employ policing for low level offenses or so called ‘‘broken windows’’ policing, as well as expanded and excessively militarized policing, have led to mass criminalization, heightened violence, and mass incarceration that disproportionately impacts Black and Brown people; 

Whereas, data shows there is a direct correlation between the increased militarization of a police department and corresponding levels of police brutality; 

Whereas, police use of force is among the leading causes of death for young men of color;

Whereas, Black people, including Black women and girls; Indigenous Peoples; and Latinos are killed by police at disproportionately higher rates than their white peers; 

Whereas, people with disabilities and other historically marginalized communities, including LGBTQ+ individuals, immigrants, and those experiencing homelessness are significantly more likely to be criminalized and targets of police violence; 

Whereas, police brutality and the use of excessive force have robbed countless communities of precious lives, have inflicted intergenerational harm and trauma to families, and are intensifying our nation’s mental health crisis; 

Whereas, police in the United States, through acts of brutality and the use of excessive force, kill far more people than police in other comparable nations and have been historically shielded from accountability; 

Whereas, the killings of hundreds each year, and the demonstrations that followed have brought sustained national attention to the racially biased police violence against people; 

Whereas, this body finds that the conduct of police officers who engage in racial profiling and excessive force, which can include shootings, brutal beatings, fatal chokings, and any other excessive treatment physically and psychologically terrorizes and  harms students and faculty of color in the CSU system;

Whereas, the systemic racialized violence of US police is not attributable to a few bad officers but the predictable outcome of widespread police training and a toxic culture that socializes officers to see Black, Indigenous and Latinx communities as “jungles” and “war zones” populated by “animals,” to see themselves as hypermasculine and militarized “warriors,” and to treat Black life as without value;

Whereas, police racism is not limited to lethal violence but systemic to police practice and the legal system itself, producing racially disparate outcomes with respect to traffic stops, arrests, use of force, detention while awaiting trial (and perhaps receiving no trial), and length of prison sentences;

Whereas, police reform has failed to reduce these racially disparate outcomes;

Whereas, the racialized violence of US policing dramatically reveals white supremacy, especially antiblackness, as systemic and intrinsic in that the political failure to intervene to stop disproportionate police violence against Black, Indigenous,  Latinx and Asian and Pacific Islander people, is mirrored by the failure to intervene to dismantle systemic racial and class  inequities with respect to housing, employment, income, education, health, safety, and ultimately life expectancy, and thus the physical violence of police reinforces the racist structural violence of US society as a whole;

Whereas, the planned deployment of military forces to suppress civilian dissent in Minneapolis is a grave violation of federal law, and a dangerous escalation of a human rights crisis;

Whereas, the police use of lung-damaging, gas-based chemical weapons to suppress dissent in communities devastated by a pandemic respiratory illness constitutes a criminal violation of public health and safety;

Be it Resolved That the San Francisco State University Executive Board of the California Faculty Association:

(1) condemns all acts of brutality, racial profiling, and the use of excessive force by law enforcement officers and calls for the end of militarized policing practices; 

(2) calls on California State University leadership to prioritize the demilitarization of its campuses by disarming all campus police and security; increasing financial and institutional long-term investment in mental health counselors, mental health crisis intervention teams, and Black student and faculty resource centers; and mandating de-escalation, unconscious bias, and anti-racist training for all campus police and security; 

(3) calls for members of the US military to respect federal law, stand down from the state of alert, and refuse deployment to Minneapolis or any other site of protest; 

(4) calls on federal, state and municipal authorities to order police and security personnel under their control to stand down and avoid protests where their presence serves as a provocation and constitutes escalation, and further order that under no circumstances are they to deploy weapons, lethal or non-lethal, against protestors; 

(5) calls for the demilitarization and defunding of police and the dismantling of policing as we know it, and further calls for a new national dialogue, with impacted communities at the forefront, about how to produce equitable community safety; 

(6) calls for the rapid reduction of armed officers trained in use of force and their replacement by unarmed state employees trained in conflict resolution, de-escalation techniques, social work and anti-racism; 

(7) calls for the replacement of weak and ineffective diversity and multicultural education programs with explicit anti-racist education, for police and all public employees; and

(8) calls for policies that make reparations for violations of the rights of Black, Indigenous, Latinx and Asian and Pacific Islander people in the form of resources placed under community control, and public recognition of and accountability for systemic racial injustice.