FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 11, 2014
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.
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