We work toward the following goals:
- To deter local incidents of police brutality.
-To bring attention to the system of
policing and police violence.
- To create a visible anti-cop presence.
- To build a culture of community
support and resistance.
- To be pro-active rather than passive.
-To support and inspire autonomous action.
Vancouver Copwatch 2010 may 13th
Statement of Unity
This land is indigenous land. (Coast Salish Territories)
Vancouver is located on unceded Coast Salish Territories. British Columbia and the Canadian government have no legal or moral jurisdiction over this land. We do not recognize the authority or legitimacy of the RCMP and VPD (Vancouver Police Department) Vancouver Copwatch recognizes that in “Canada,” as elsewhere, the policing and criminal justice system function as weapons of on-going colonialism and capitalism.
We are against the police.
Vancouver Copwatch works from the understanding that police brutality is not unusual; it is not the work of a few “bad apples” that need to be weeded out. Policing is an institution that is fundamentally concerned with enforcing social hierarchies (along lines of race, class, gender, citizenship status, etc.), and controlling marginalized and/or rebellious populations. We oppose the policing system as a whole.
We are not ‘Neutral’
In confronting an institution as powerful as the police, we do not believe neutrality is possible or desirable. To claim to be neutral in the face of an overwhelming power imbalance is to support the group already in power (i.e. the cops).
We are not a civil liberties group.
We are critical of a “civil liberties” framework which aims only to ensure the protection of legally enshrined “rights.” We desire more than the rights which the State chooses to give us. Laws written by a colonial and capitalist elite do not set the boundaries of our action or imagination.
We strive towards non-hierarchy in our organizing.
We oppose all forms of oppression, including, but not limited to, those based on gender identity, sexuality, race, class, age, ability, size, ethnicity, language, and religion.
We value autonomy.
We support autonomous organizing and action, and respect the decision-making power of individuals and their communities. We strive for accountability and solidarity with communities and individuals engaged in similar struggles. We can only speak and act for ourselves, but we can work with others.