Thursday, October 6, 2011

Feminist Action Alert: Please Help Support and Complete Under Siege: The Policing of Women and Girls in America

African American woman hands-up.jpg
image for the film, Under Siege
With thanks to Farah for the images and for the text and links that follow.

One thing that is clear from all the recent protests in the U.S. is how critically important it is for the marginalised, ignored, oppressed, silenced, and systematically assaulted and murdered populations that corporate Amerikkka doesn't give a shit about, to voice our own viewpoints, experiences, and strategies for survival, resistance, and revolution. Even within progressive white- and male-dominated media, the voices and experiences of women of color are largely ignored.

Please consider supporting this film project in any ways you can. You can click on a link below to view the trailer. 
Under Siege: The Policing of Women and Girls in America is a groundbreaking documentary that will present the unique voices and the intimate stories of  women and girls who have experienced law enforcement violence as well as gender-and-race-forms of police misconduct and abuse, but their cases garner virtually no national attention. VIEW AN ADDITIONAL VIDEO CLIP: "Pulled Over In a Deserted Area"
Our stories matter and can bolster the case for civil rights and human rights-- Driving While Female,  a national report produced in 2002 highlights many of the same types of police violence faced by women in 2011. The report highlights cases where police officers use their authority, often in traffic stops, to harass or assault women drivers. Instead issuing these women with a traffic ticket police force these women to strip and walk home, beat, rape or coerce them to perform sexual favors as the price of avoiding a traffic ticket. The abuse runs the gamut from harassment to sexual assault and even murder.

None of these women’s names, their experiences or their stories come to mind when we think of police brutality or police violence.  Such cases fall outside the scope of mainstream discourse around police misconduct and brutality, which, more often than not, rightly centers the experiences of young men of color presumed to be straight, but excludes of those of women, including young women of color, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities, including LGBT people of color.

Under Siege: The Policing of Women and Girls in America will center police violence against women within the broader debate and advocacy for police reform and give voice to the women and girls who have not found justice. An 11 minute trailer provides an introduction to the complex relationship women and girls have with police, but as this is a work-in-progress, only with further production will the story take shape. 

Throughout the development and pre-production phase of the project, we spoke to women and members of the LGBT community who have been victims of police beatings. We met girls in New York City schools who are sexually harassed daily, right in front of their Brooklyn High School but public debate, grassroots organizing strategies, civilian oversight, and other initiatives addressing police violence and misconduct have been almost exclusively informed by a paradigm centering on the young Black or Latino heterosexual man. Although this is necessary, how much stronger could the movement be if we added the lives of women and girls and their experiences with gendered-forms of violence. Help us make the invisible, visible and help tell all our stories and give voice to those women still unable to speak. Give anything, $10, $15, $20 at Indiegogo.
Farah Tanis, Executive Director
Black Women's Blueprint
Telephone: 347-599-2682 | Fax: 347-750-1652
HELP FINISH THE FILM- view the trailer

Under Siege: The Policing of Women & Girls

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