ALAA Roots — An Unofficial Site

April 24, 2007

2007.04.24: ALAA and Police Abuse

Attached are the list of thirty-eight signers of the “Justice for Sean Bell” statement from LAS staff. The statement will be publicly issued in early May (details to follow); to add your name, please reply to this message.

The following background information shows how this statement is entirely consistent with ALAA’s past opposition to racism and police abuse.

*December 27, 1986. Members of Brooklyn CDD Affirmative Action Committee of ALAA joined protests in Howard Beach, Queens, demanding indictment of white racists who beat to death Michael Griffith, an African American man.

*July 1987. A statement initiated by the Brooklyn CDD Affirmative Action Committee of ALAA initiated a statement that publicly criticized the acquittal of Bernhard Goetz, a white “vigilante” who had repeatedly shot several young black men in a subway car.

*Oct. 29, 1988. Members of Brooklyn CDD Affirmative Action Committee of ALAA joined Staten Island protest against the racist murder of African American teenager Derrick Tyrus.

*[Date 1989]. Members of Brooklyn CDD Affirmative Action Committee of ALAA joined protests in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, demanding indictment of white racists who shot to death 16-year-old Yusef Hawkins an African American teen.

*September 1989, Brooklyn CDD Affirmative Action Committee of ALAA publicly condemned “preferential treatment” accorded white teenagers charged with murdering Black teenager Yusef Hawkins, and demonization of African American teenagers falsely accused of attacking a white Central Park jogger.

*February 1, 1990. ALAA demonstration focused media attention on the police-instigated beating in the Brooklyn court pens of a defendant charged with child sexual abuse.

*August 15, 1990. Front-page press coverage reported ALAA’s charge that guards on Rikers Island had inflicted a “secret mass beating” in which “[t]he walls were covered with the inmates’ blood” and one inmate was fatally injured. “There was,” charged ALAA, “no resistance, there was no provocation. It was like declaring open season on inmates.” Mayor Dinkins ordered an investigation of the charges.

*Early 1990s. ALAA took an increasingly public stance against the “war on drugs,” which it characterized as a reflection of “institutional racism.”

*1991. ALAA opposed Clarence Thomas’s Supreme Court nomination, criticized the provision of Glock automatic pistols to the NYPD, and organized against the epidemic of police abuse.

*October 20, 1997. In the wake of police torture of Abner Louima, establishment of joint LAS/ALAA/1199 committee to implement and expand upon new ALAA contract provisions to combat police misconduct and abuse.

*March 22, 1999. More than thirty ALAA and 1199 members are arrested during protests at NYPD headquarters against the police murder of Amadou Diallo.

*June 1999. ALAA legal observer Antonia Codling arrested during with mass protest against the police murder of Patrick Dorismond (charges later dissmissed).

*October 23, 1999. ALAA plays leading role in Anti-Klan protest in Foley Square.

*March 22, 2000. In response to the police murder of Amadou Diallo, Patrick Dorismond and other people of color, ALAA issues wide-ranging demands, including dismissal of the police commissioner, indictment of police officers, abolition of police sweeps, and an end to the “war on drugs.”

*March 21, 2001. ALAA denounces the “NYPD’s War On Blacks.”

*February 21, 2002. ALAA denounces the “Bush administration’s broad assault on precious civil liberties and democratic rights,” including the systematic attack on “men of Muslim and Middle Eastern origin.”

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