Unite Oregon is in mourning yet again as we grieve for the tragic deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, two Black men who were each racially profiled and killed by police. We also grieve for those wounded or killed in the senseless attack on law enforcement in Dallas, Texas.
There is profound sorrow and pain in our hearts as we mourn those who lost their lives these past weeks. And we know that this is not merely an issue in other parts of our country. Profiling happens in Oregon too. As we know from our work to pass Oregon's End Profiling Act, people all over our state have been targeted by police simply because of who they are. That's unacceptable. Law enforcement officers are issued a gun by the state and a license to kill, and must be held to higher standards of accountability.
Unite Oregon and the communities we engage have led the charge for police accountability in Oregon by passing the End Profiling Act, HB 2002, in 2015. Together we are now working with Oregon's Attorney General to implement HB 2002 by developing comprehensive and specific reform & training programs to prevent and redress profiling in our communities. And we’ll work in the 2017 legislative session to turn Oregon into a national leader in 21st-century community policing, in order to build trust between law enforcement and our communities.
Will you join us in this work?
Underlying all of our racial justice and police accountability work is one core principle: Black lives matter.
Unite Oregon stands with our communities in mourning the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, and those killed or injured in Dallas. We will work to create safe spaces for all of our members and allies to come together, reflect on the devastating tragedies of the past weeks, and to work hand-in-hand to ensure that law enforcement in Oregon is accountable to all of us.