The past 48 hours have left us stunned, heartbroken, and justifiably fearful. While there are no words that can effectively convey our horror at the back-to-back killings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, here are a few things we can do to honor their memories:
Campaign Zero – Campaign Zero provides a comprehensive list of policy solutions for issues such as excessive use of force, and for-profit policing.
Campaign Zero also provides agendas detailing the steps your federal, state, and local elected officials should be taking to combat police violence.
Campaign Zero’s Legislation Tracker tool allows you to check on the progress of new legislation designed to address police brutality and criminal justice reform.
See If Your State has Enacted Legislation to End Police Violence
Police Union Contract Project – This project provides info on how police union contracts are used to circumvent attempts to hold officers responsible for their actions. It offers an easy to understand explanation of how and why these union contracts are used to obstruct police accountability, and identifies “problematic language,” found in police union contracts in 81 of the country’s largest cities.
Make Your Voice Heard
Your elected officials are supposed to work for you. Contact them. Voice your concerns. If you have ideas, share them. If you don’t, go back to Campaign Zero’s website and find one.
If you don’t know who your elected officials are, you can use this incredibly useful tool designed by Common Cause and the Sunlight Foundation. It uses your address to generate a list of the elected officials representing you at both the federal and state level.
The tool also allows you to easily check on what they’ve been up to—the bills they’ve been working on, their committee assignments, and who has given them money.
You can donate to Philando Castile’s family here. This account was set up by Xavier Burgin, a filmmaker based in L.A. Burgin does not personally know Castile’s family. He set up the campaign to “help in a tangible way,” and will direct all proceeds to Castile’s family.
Donate to Philando Castile’s Family