Sep 3 2017

Piedmonters Object to Urban Shield

Preparedness Priorities Debated

On Friday, August 25 the Urban Shield Task Force met in Oakland to discuss the future of Alameda County’s Urban Shield training program.  The controversy focuses on whether terrorism is the most important crisis for Bay Area preparation.  The funding program’s terrorism nexus requires that 25 percent of all grant funds go for “terrorism prevention activities.” Yet Alameda county’s Emergency Operation Plan lists terrorism preparedness as the eighth-most important disaster scenario, according to critics of Urban Shield.

Piedmont residents Melissa Gjerde, Lauren Mayfield, Rohaina Hassan and Jordan Bailey opposed the program on other grounds, stating “Urban Shield programs that promote/train for a militarized police force are fundamentally racist and Islamophobic.”

Also objecting were members of the Stop Urban Shield coalition who prefer investing in disaster prevention, which they consider more important than the Urban Shield.

The Urban Shield Task Force )voted down a motion to avoid funding requiring terrorism preparedness, which some called crucial for BART. Also rejected was the proposal to urge the Alameda County Board of Supervisors to lobby Congress to remove the “nexus to terrorism” requirement.

The Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted to create a task force to study and report back on Urban Shield on January 10, 2017.  The task force is composed of more than a dozen appointees.

Read about Bay Area Urban Shield here.

Read more about EMS Urban Shield here.

Read ABC 7 news report here.

Leave a Comment