Have you encountered abusive, physical and disrespectful police or vigilante behavior or were you attacked because you did not belong in a store, business, certain community or neighborhood?
Contact BlackLine and report your incident.
1 (800) 604-5841
BlackLine is non-judgmental, affirming and supportive, listener-witnessing and information gathering about your experience.
Addressing Law Enforcement Violence as a Public Health Issue
On November 13, 2018 the American Public Health Association passed a statement naming police violence as a public health issue and recommending divestment from police and investment in community-based and community-led solutions. This is huge. See information below or click here for the full the statement:
Ways to reduce traumatic and harmful police interaction as well as incidents of police brutality towards marginalized folks and their community.
Reason #1 not to call the cops:
Don’t feel obligated to defend property—especially corporate “private” property. Before confronting someone or contacting police, ask yourself if anyone is being hurt or endangered by property theft or damage. If the answer “no,” then let it be.
Reason #2 to not call the cops:
If something of yours is stolen and you need to file a report for insurance or other purposes, consider going to the police station instead of bringing cops into your community. You may inadvertently be putting someone in your neighborhood at risk.
Reason #3 to not call the cops:
If you observe someone exhibiting behavior that seems odd, don’t assume they’re publicly intoxicated. Traumatic brain injury or a similar medical episode may be occurring. Ask if they are OK, if they have a medical condition, or if they need assistance.
Reason #4 to not call the cops:
If you see someone pulled over with car trouble, stop, ask if they need help or if you can call a tow truck for them. If the police come on the scene, they may give punishments/unnecessary tickets to people with car issues, target those without documentation, or worse.
Reason #5 to not call the cops:
Keep a contact list of community resources like suicide hotlines. When police are contacted to “manage” such situations, people with mental illness are sixteen times more likely to be killed by cops than those without mental health challenges.
Reason #6 to not call the cops:
Check your impulse to call the police on someone you believe looks or is acting “suspicious.” Is their race, gender, ethnicity, class, or housing situation influencing your choice? Such calls can be death sentences for many.
Reason #7 to not call the cops:
Teachers, coworkers, or organizers must avoid inviting police to classrooms, workplaces, and public spaces. Create a culture of taking care of each other, not putting people in harm’s way. Groups holding rally/demonstration: DON’T get permits or cooperate with police.
Inviting cops into spaces puts people at risk; perpetuates an unnecessary fear and trauma. Cooperation with and including them, gives them more power and control in our lives. If they really want to be about the community they’d initiate, non confrontational out of uniform interactions.
Black Women’s March – Continuing the Legacy of Harriet Tubman, April 7, 2018. For photos of the march scroll down.
A few demands provided by Black Women in Westchester, Ulster, Orange, and Rockland Counties:
- Improved services for Black LGBTQ gender non-conforming folks
- The silence and complacency regarding the continued murder and brutalization of trans women, especially black trans women
- Eradicate poverty
- Address environmental racism that occurs in communities like Newburgh’s PFOS water contamination and generational high lead levels
- Improve education, especially in the East Ramapo School District
- Transform and dismantle the police
- Disinvest in police, invest in community
- Eliminating cash bail in New York - we need legitimate Alternative To Incarceration (ATI) programs that are not electronic monitoring, probation and other fucked up governmental programs
- Improve mental health services
- Address drug use impacting Black families, through public health not criminalization
- End the mass incarceration that is tearing Black families apart
- Address disparity in the foster care system
- End sexual violence against Black women. Believe them.
- Job opportunities that include a living wage
- Affordable childcare
- Safe, decent and affordable housing
- Safety in our homes (from state and intimate partner violence)
- Address inadequate or non-existent legal criminal defense
- Stop policing Black Women on their anger
- Stop using us for legitimacy in your predominately-white agencies
- Financial institutions cease charging fees for minor transactions
- Access to bank accounts without being charged fees for not maintaining a certain balance
- Ability for undocumented Black and Brown women to secure Drivers' licenses
- Stop arresting Black and Trans Women for survivor crimes
- Improved transportation infrastructure
- Reduce and eliminate states’ social control and punishment in the judicial system (criminal and family)
- We are not a monolithic people and the One Black Women in the room is no longer acceptable
- NY state enact racial impact laws- provide opportunity for policymakers to consider alternative approaches that do not worsen disparities. (Similar to fiscal and environmental impact statements)
- Access to necessary and needed hormone treatment
- Reproductive justice, having a say over our bodies, choice to have many children or none at all
We are looking for people who identify as black to join us in a celebration of beauty!
Take and donate a picture of your nose and lips to be used for #beautifulisblack. #beautifulisblack is a campaign sponsored by Black Lives Matter Hudson Valley.
In early 2016, MAC Cosmetics posted this close-up of Aamito Lagum’s lips on its Instagram account. Soon after, anonymous internet trolls posted racist, derogatory remarks. See this New York Times article for more information.
BlackLine is a 24-hour hotline geared towards the Black, Black LGBTQI, Brown, Native and Muslim community. However, no one will be turned away from the Hotline.
The purpose of the BlackLine is to provide people with an anonymous and confidential avenue to report negative, physical, and inappropriate contact with police and vigilantes. We include vigilante contact because of what can happen to folks in rural and suburban communities at the hands of local community members. BlackLine can gather needed information to share with local community organizers and officials to create the most effective response to police and/or vigilante contact.
Another component of the BlackLine is to provide immediate crisis counseling to those who are upset, need to talk with someone immediately, or are in distress. For each location in the Hudson Valley, referrals can be given when/if necessary. If the caller is in extreme distress and a harm to themselves and others, the listener will gather as much information as possible to forward to the appropriate authorities.
There are no formal educational requirements for our listeners, however they receive intensive crisis counseling training. We do require that listeners are open, willing, motivated, and committed to social change. Volunteers can be people of all ages, ethnicities, sexual orientations, gender identities, and especially those who are bilingual and bicultural.
BlackLine training is occasionally offered for people who are interested in becoming a listener. You need not have prior experience or qualification in crisis listening, just life experience and an ability to listen to people.
BlackLine: Helping the most-impacted folks through crisis, abuse, and mistreatment. One call at a time.
We are a volunteer-run and volunteer-staffed organization. Please consider donating to help fund our hotline, advocacy work, and other projects around the Hudson Valley!