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Wary of Mass Surveillance and Privacy Risks, New Group Wants St. Louis “Drone Free”

from Riverfront Times

February 12, 2014

boeing_drone-thumb-550x310St. Louis’ mayor, police chief, and top prosecutor all want the same thing: drones.

When the topic of drones flying over St. Louis was in the news last summer, they said drones will help fight crime, catch the bad guys, and make surveillance easier. But a new group that opposes the use of drones in St. Louis wants to tell the city’s residents that the controversial devices could do more to restrict liberty than increase safety…read more

Wary of Mass Surveillance and Privacy Risks, New Group Wants St. Louis “Drone Free”

From Riverfront Times: St. Louis’ mayor, police chief, and top prosecutor all want the same thing: drones. When the topic of drones flying over St. Louis was in the news last summer, they said drones will help fight crime, catch … Continue reading

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Press Release: Launch of DroneFreeStL

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEFist Button STL3

February 11, 2014

Contact: dronefreestl@gmail.com

Coalition Launches Drone Free St. Louis Campaign

to STOP Police Acquisition of Drones

 

St. Louis–Drone Free St. Louis is a coalition of groups and individuals who resist the use of unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, by the St. Louis Police Department.  The coalition formed after Police Chief Sam Dotson announced last June that the St. Louis Police Department was applying for FAA permission to purchase a drone. This sentiment was repeated again in October when Chief Dotson joined the Holden Policy Forum at Webster University as the special guest fielding questions about the program.

Drone Free St. Louis is launching today to coincide with a national day of protest called The Day We Fight Back. The national effort aims to end mass surveillance.

Drone Free St. Louis also seeks to ensure that people are protected from the privacy abuses that may result from other government or private use of drones.

DroneFreeStL wants to promote individual and collective freedom by:

  • Stopping the advent of a new era of mass surveillance, which threatens to monitor behavior 24/7 and thereby limit free thought and expression.
  • Opposing the militarization of the police and the city’s part in furthering the military-industrial complex.
  • Ensuring that the St. Louis Police Department and the city of St. Louis allocate resources to improve lives, especially for underserved populations, rather than for technology that will most likely be used against those same communities.
  • Guaranteeing that there be adequate privacy and safety regulations in place, if such regulations are indeed possible, before consideration of any domestic use of drones for non-policing purposes.

Drone Free St. Louis has created a website with relevant and up-to-date information regarding police usage of drones and a FAQ.

Please contact above for interview

           Website:                                                     Twitter:                                         Facebook:

www.dronefreestl.org                                      @dronefreestl                                 Drone Free StL

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Drones dominate Twitter chat with St. Louis police chief

From stltoday:

November 11, 2013

ST. LOUIS • The police chief’s first-ever live Q&A session on Twitter garnered questions and comments today about everything from drones to crime statistics and the need for a civilian review board.

Dotson tweeted nearly 80 times during the session from noon to about 1:30 p.m. according to his Twitter account, @chiefslmpd. Nearly 50 people tweeted questions and comments to him.

About a dozen of those individuals’ tweets centered on using drones in police work — an idea Dotson has floated since the summer after announcing that he filed an application with the Federal Aviation Administration.

In an interview following the live chat session, Dotson said the FAA has given the department the first green light…read more