Law enforcement should not be our default answer to every social problem that we have, according to an activist from the Anti-Police Terror Project (APTP).
Cat Brooks was invited by De Anza’s Police Accountability Project (DAPAP) which is a part of the criminal justice program of the Vasconcellos Institute for Democracy in Action (VIDA) on Wednesday, May 23.
Her organization unifies community members to “figure out ways they can keep the community safe without solely relying on law enforcement.”
Brooks began by describing her experience with police enforcement and her participation in activism for APTP and other similar organizations.
In one instance, Brooks was arrested after calling the police about physical altercation from her ex-parter, she said.
According to DAPAP member Evelyn Rocha, 37, undecided major, VIDA invited Brooks to inform De Anza students about outside organizations who share similar goals and philosophies as DAPAP.
“It’s very important for people to be aware,” Rocha said. “Once people learn about what’s happened, we can actually come together and build consensus around what we need to do about this problem.”
Paris Fernandez, 20, English major, wanted to be informed about police terror and how people of color communities felt about it.
Although Fernandez enjoyed Brooks’s presentation, she did have some concerns about Brook’s approach of “completely pushing police aside and calling action to ourselves.”
“I do believe there are good police out there that do want to protect you and keep you safe,” Fernandez said. “I think we just need to find a balance.”