This petition will be delivered to:
Karen Williams, President and CEO of the Louisville Convention and Visitors Bureau
Police repression is growing across the U.S. and globally through coordinated efforts to militarize weapons and tactics. Militarized attacks like those on Ferguson and Baton Rouge’s Black communities have sadly become a familiar headline in the news - but this phenomenon stretches back decades and continues to expand today.
Police departments are now directly funded and trained by the Department of Homeland Security and many receive military-grade equipment from the Department of Defense.
The National Tactical Officers Association Conference is a week-long weapons expo and SWAT training taking place August 14th - 19th in Louisville, Kentucky. NTOA escalates aggression and violence in police departments by actively promoting a “warrior culture”, a program to harden “the mind, body and spirit for the rigors of combat.” Co-hosted by the Louisville Metro Police Department, NTOA’s conference comes in the wake of the killing by Louisville police of Darnell Wicker-- a 57-year old Black man who was shot multiple times on August 10th.
The weapons expo at NTOA proudly advertises over 200+ arms and tech dealers including tank hawker Lenco Armored Vehicles, global tear gas giant Combined Tactical Systems and top bomb and drone manufacturer Northrop Grumman. While this equipment is often justified as a tool for handling high-stakes situations, we know that during the 100+ SWAT deployments a day across the U.S. it is used commonly for drug raids, to issue search warrants, and against peaceful protesters.
Reject NTOA for good! Support the growing Black Lives Matter movement against police violence. Call on NTOA's host, the International Convention Center, to end its support for police militarization in Louisville, and across the United States.
Sign the petition to demand the canceling of the 2016 National Tactical Officers Association Conference and challenge the militarization of our communities and the police warrior mentality.