Ahead of a Police Commission meeting set for Wednesday night, a coalition of leaders called for an end to racially biased traffic stops, also known as “driving, bicycling, or walking while Black or brown” or “pretext stops,” during a virtual press conference.
The San Francisco Police Department’s stop and search data were discussed at a Board of Supervisors meeting on March 22. The numbers are stark: the SFPD continues to stop, search, and use force against Black people in San Francisco at a far higher rate than white people. Last year, Black people, as compared to white people, were almost six times more likely to be stopped, ten times more likely to be searched, and 12 times more likely to be subject to the use of force.
Sameena Usman, Senior Government Relations Coordinator for the Council on American-Islamic Relations-SFBA, said, “Pretext stops are an excuse to pull people over for simple things such as an item hanging from a rearview mirror or tinted windows, and question, search, and even detain people. They do not help public safety and they disproportionately target communities of color, especially Black people.”
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