Student Safety Town Hall
Monday, March 6, 2023
4:00pm - 5:30pm PST
Eshleman Senate Chambers (5th floor)
Zoom link: https://berkeley.zoom.us/j/98832306252
Invitees: all UC Berkeley undergraduate, graduate, and professional students
Automatic Zoom captioning will be enabled
To discuss other access options and accommodations, please contact us at email@example.com; we are committed to access
Hosts: IAB / ASUC / GA
The Student Safety Town Hall is hosted by the Chancellor’s Independent Advisory Board on Police Accountability and Community Safety (IAB) and leaders in the Associated Students of the University of California (ASUC) and the Graduate Assembly (GA). The IAB is charged with making recommendations to the Chancellor and other campus leaders that improve public safety on campus, are rooted in justice and belonging, and honor ideas and input from our peers, colleagues, and neighbors across and around campus. The ASUC and GA are working to incorporate student perspectives and expertise in safety planning and programs on and around campus.
If you cannot attend the public meeting but would like to provide input, you can send an email with your questions, commentary, and/or thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org
Join the IAB Email Distribution List
The IAB has an email distribution list that we will use to distribute meeting announcements; infrequent newsletters, position statements, and public educational materials; and calls for community input. To join the email distribution list, visit this page.
The IAB is structurally independent of the UCPD, reports directly to the Chancellor, and is accountable to the broader campus community. The Board maintains independence in order to provide equitable and accessible community engagement, policy review, community complaint analysis, independent data analysis, and recommendations for changes to policing and safety programs.
For the academic year 2021-22, the Chancellor's Immediate Advisory Board on Police Accountability and Community Safety is charged with creating an annual report that will provide recommendations on the following:
- Complaint review and disciplinary action
- Data collection, analysis, and publication
- Policy design and implementation
- Outreach, education, and community accountability
In addition, the 2020-21 IAB is charged with overseeing the implementation of campus-approved IAB recommendations from previous years and responding to campus circumstances that may arise relevant to policing and safety.
The Board will make recommendations regarding policing policies, procedures, practices, and trainings when the Board identifies possible improvements or gaps. The Board will solicit community input during public meetings. The Board will facilitate the provision of multifaceted support to campus community members impacted by police violence and/or negative police encounters by aiding in communication with relevant faculty and/or supervisors regarding the incident and potential impacts and serving as a liaison between impacted individual(s), groups, and University administration/police.
The IAB has adopted the following definitions in its work, as laid out in the inaugural 2019-2020 IAB report.
Community Safety: The IAB relies on a definition of community safety that extends beyond ensuring the security of persons and property on or near campus and centers the experiences of those who have been most impacted by policing on campus. As it is written in our charge, community safety means:
- That those who are public servants charged with serving and protecting do so in ways that are consistent with the University's stated values and the highest standards of professional conduct and consistency.
- That all community members are safe from arbitrary, unwarranted, unrestrained, and/or excessive acts of surveillance, bodily intrusion, psychological harm or violence at the hands of law enforcement on and near campus.
- That campus representatives center the holistic wellness and inclusion of vulnerable campus communities (e.g. Black, disabled, neurodivergent, Indigenous, Latinx, trans and gender-nonconforming, undocumented, formerly incarcerated and system-impacted, LGBTQ, etc.) in their interactions.
In our definition of public safety, we also elevate desires and actions to prevent crime and other forms of interpersonal harm in the first place. And in instances in which community members nonetheless experience harm, we aim to rigorously and lovingly support their material, emotional, physical, and relational healing and repair as an integral part of community safety.
Police accountability: Police accountability typically refers to a formal process of holding law enforcement accountable for harm (e.g., internal disciplinary processes, civil or criminal trials, etc.). We can also think of accountability as a practice in which law enforcement acknowledges the concerns and complaints of community members and responds in a meaningful way. In each case, accountability centers the concerns and expectations of the public and holds law enforcement accountable to these concerns and expectations. Instead of privileging the paradigm of law enforcement (e.g., in evaluating whether or not an action was “justified”), police accountability elevates and requires law enforcement, as public servants, to meet a set of community expectations and standards for police behavior.
Defunding: Defunding the police is part of a larger abolitionist effort to "reduce the scale, scope, power, authority, and legitimacy of criminalizing institutions” (#8toabolition) and simultaneously build up "life-sustaining systems that reduce, prevent, and better address harm" (Ongweso). Black Lives Matter co-founder and activist Alicia Garza explains defunding the police this way: "When we talk about defunding the police, what we're saying is 'invest in the resources that our communities need.’” The mission and values of a college campus require that we follow calls to strategically reduce the scope of policing and reallocate resources to life-sustaining systems on a college campus. Defunding acknowledges that financial budgets reflect a moral budgeting.
Demilitarization: Demilitarization calls for the elimination of military-grade technologies and equipment. Local and campus police departments, including UCPD and the City of Berkeley, have relied on the Defense Logistics Agency’s 1033 program to receive transfers of military equipment, including grenade launchers, bayonets and armored vehicles. The dangers of a militarized police force have been made evident in law enforcement responses to protesters in cities across the country. On a college campus, demilitarization begins with an auditing of all equipment, tools, technologies, and tactics; the establishment of a Prohibited Weapons List; and must include continued oversight to ensure that military-style equipment is not being adapted for policing purposes on college campuses.
For more than a decade, the Black Student Union (BSU) and the Associated Students of the University of California (ASUC), in collaboration with key student and staff partners on UC campuses, led systemwide and campus-based organizing efforts advocating for greater transparency and accountability in policing on and near UC campuses.
In 2017, the University of California Academic Senate’s Report of the Systemwide Public Safety Task Force, initiated by the University Committee on Faculty Welfare (UCFW), made a similar recommendation based on several UC-wide police use-of-force incidents against Black and Brown community members.
In 2018, the UC Systemwide Academic Senate recommended a review of the “UC Police Policies and Administrative Procedures manual (the “Gold Book”) and other systemwide public safety directives to identify best practices for all UC campus police departments.”
In 2019, the Presidential Task Force on Universitywide Policing recommended that each campus establish an Independent Advisory Board on Policing that would work with campus leadership, the campus community, and the campus police department to identify, make recommendations, and address issues involving the safety and quality of life of students, staff and faculty.
Additionally, persistent demands from students (Senate Resolution No. 2018/2019-036) require that UC Berkeley’s IAB also focus its efforts on the context-specific needs and concerns of students, staff, and faculty of UC Berkeley, especially those who have historically been most impacted by negative encounters with policing on and near campus.
To view the 2019 - 20 IAB roster, please click this link.
To view the 2020 - 21 IAB roster, please click this link.
The IAB is composed of 14 voting members, listed below. There are two co-chairs, four graduate students, four undergraduate students, two faculty members, two staff members, a community representative, and an AFSCME 3299 representative. In addition to discussion amongst voting members, the IAB regularly invites guests to contribute to IAB dialogue, receive board updates, and share their expertise on campus and community safety.
|Position||Voting Member Name||Sponsor|
|Student co-chair||Lucy Andrews||Chancellor|
|Faculty co-chair||Jonathan Simon||Chancellor|
|Grad student||McKalee Steen||Graduate Assembly|
|Grad student||vacant||African American and African Diaspora Studies|
|Grad student||vacant||Graduate Division and Equity & Inclusion|
|Grad student||Richie Rodriguez-Leon||At-large|
|Undergrad student||Bryan Rodriguez||Associated Students of the University of California|
|Undergrad student||vacant||African American and African Diaspora Studies|
|Undergrad student||Cesar Garcia||Berkeley Underground Scholars|
|Undergrad student||Camilla Nguyen||At-large|
|Staff||Elisa Huerta||Centers for Educational Justice and Community Engagement|
|Staff to the board||Russ Ballati||Vice Chancellor of Adminstration|
|Staff to the board||Martha Chavez||Chancellor|