Rally Tuesday at City Hall to demand justice for Mario Woods and an end to war on Black and Brown people in San Francisco

Mario Woods, a young man armed only with a small knife in San Francisco’s last Black neighborhood, was executed Dec. 2, 2015, by a firing squad that shot him 21 times. He never threatened the police who surrounded him and was only trying to walk away.

Rally and press conference on the steps of City Hall Oct. 22 at noon, hearing on US Dept of Justice’s 272 recommendations at 3 p.m.

Wealth and Disparities in the Black Community – Justice 4 Mario Woods has been fighting for police accountability and justice for victims of police violence in San Francisco since the execution by San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) of Mario Woods in 2015. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Community Oriented Policing (COPS) report containing 272 reform recommendations was issued in 2016 as a result of the huge and historic outcry after an epidemic of fatal shootings by SFPD.

In 2017, when Trump and US Attorney General Sessions ceased oversight of the COPS program, San Francisco committed to completing the process. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed in February 2018 (by then interim mayor Mark Farrell), giving oversight to the California Department of Justice and the California Attorney General’s Office.

Yet this is the first time in more than TWO YEARS that the Board of Supervisors has held a hearing on COPS progress – or lack thereof. As of the end of September 2019, only a little over 10 percent of the 272 recommendations are substantially complete. On upwards of 61 percent, no measurable progress has yet been made.

On Feb. 1, 2019, we discussed the lack of attention to the 272 COPS recommendations with the California Attorney General’s Office. We have since communicated with SFPD and City Supervisors.

We discovered that SFPD has made very little progress – especially when it comes to racist policing. We discovered that SFPD is picking which items it focuses on first. We discovered that with the departure of Criminal Justice and Civil Rights Advisor Kelli Evans from the Attorney General’s Office, so departed that office’s cultural competency.

On Feb. 7, 2016, during the Super Bowl halftime show, San Francisco activists told the Mario Woods story to Beyoncé’s dancers, who quickly joined the protest. The halftime show was a tribute to the Black Panther Party, most famous for “policing the police.” – Photo: Jamilah King

“Despite three reports studying Black People in regard to racism in 55 years, Black San Franciscans are worse off than ever before,” declares Phelicia Jones, founder of Wealth and Disparities in the Black Community – Justice 4 Mario Woods.

SFPD’s ongoing racist policing and the City of San Francisco’s lack of oversight has resulted in continued injustice for Black and Brown people. From 2016 through the second quarter of 2019, SFPD’s own data shows unchanged racial disparity: More than 10 times as many Black people as White people per capita were arrested and were targets of use of force.

Being 10 times as likely to be a target as a Black San Franciscan is tantamount to war on Black people. Why isn’t the City demanding action? Why aren’t disciplinary, hiring and in-the-street policing practices vastly changed?

More than 10 times as many Black people as White people per capita have been arrested and made targets of use of force since the execution of Mario Woods. Being 10 times as likely to be a target as a Black San Franciscan is tantamount to war on Black people.

We demand equitable policing across all racial categories per capita. The PEOPLE must demand this change, because police and officials are simply not enacting it. WE DEMAND RESULTS. We demand the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, the SF Police Commission, and the California Attorney General’s Office staff DO THEIR JOBS when it comes to Black and Brown people.

Contact Phelicia Jones, founder of Wealth and Disparities in the Black Community – Justice 4 Mario Woods, at mwjusticenow@gmail.com.