Black children and men with a lack of communication skills have been killed across the country recently, for not complying with verbal commands from the police. We need to address this issue and find progressive ways to avoid making these mistakes in the future.
This global launch of #JaneCampaign named after Jane Tipton who is also a Lake Elsinore, California resident and is the single mother of an autistic child. Her son does not respond to verbal commands and her fears are the same as any mother’s fear when encountering the police as we have seen with Elijah McClain who was murdered by the police when stopped for a routine check and Kenneth French who was recently shot at Costco in Corona.
We started this campaign after introducing to the Riverside Sheriff’s Department two successful programs that currently exist in other states. Our goal is to come together for the safety of everyone involved when an encounter occurs between the police and individuals on the spectrum.
One is called the Blue Envelope which is A driver with autism spectrum disorder can place a license, registration and insurance card into the Blue Envelope, which can be kept in the car’s glove box or on the visor. In the event of a motor vehicle traffic stop or crash, drivers can present the Blue Envelope with their information to officers, which will immediately alert police officers that the driver is on the autism spectrum.
The other program which is called Cahoots in Oregon has a feature called the Additional Registry. This program flags an address to let the officers know they are entering a residence that has special needs.
This program created another program in the state of Colorado right after Elijah McClain was killed. They took in over 800 calls without arrest or incident. We already have received a warm reception with Riverside County’s Sheriff’s Department and thought there would have been an announcement last year of the new changes. Now that Colorado is implementing a second program after the success of the first program, we feel the urgency even more since they have had to award the family of Kenneth French $17 million dollars for wrongful death suit.
“I, my team, and many other local residents care about the families who fall into this category and our future generations of special needs and Autistic children. Our goal is to bring about a more positive outcome in this area, raising the voices of the concerned families across America as well as more unity in our communities. A government of, by, and for the people is what we all deserve.”
—Antoinette Hall, Executive Director of Stand Up For Justice