You are here

Protocol on campain against racist police controls 21.3-23.3.2003 in Jena

Meeting in Jena for the preperation of the campain against „racist police controls„ 21.3-23.3.2003

It follows a summary of the meeting in Jena. This summary is subjective and therefore please add, correct or ...
Racist police controls are part of a racist context. They can be put into practice because the public with its racist prejudices and discrimination on the one hand and the state with its racist laws and institutions on the other, legitimate these controls. It is clear that this form of direct discrimination cannot be understood nor fought against without putting it into the context of a racist system or society. So a campaign as here means also finding a balance between focussing of the problem and its generalisation. It means that police control must be in the centre of the campaign and the conditions for such controls must be subject at the same time. For example there was a specific suggestion, which was put forward by different persons, that we should not look at police controls isolated from the problem of ‚residenzpflicht’. Racist police controls are possible because of such laws as the ‚Residenzpflicht’. On the other hand this is also the reason why the public thinks that such controls are legitimate. And also because refugees or other-than-german-or-west-north-european-looking-people are always suspect to crime, be it because of drug panics or other paranoias like the terrorism controls. The proposal to see this campaign not only as a campaign of refugees but also of so called migrants and so called germans was generally agreed with. But there was also remarks on the fact that refugees play a special role in this campaign. Most of the control target refugees who are breaking the ‚Residenzpflicht’ or have no papers. So-called Migrants and Germans can be and are in fact object of such controls, but not facing fines. From this perspecitve this also means that refugees have the possibility to fight against these controls on a more serious level (disobedience) than others, which does not mean that so called migrants and Germans are not able to protest.
There was a discussion on the meaning of the individual cases (see Cornelius and Constance) in this campaign. This discussion was started during the fundraising debate, where we were discussing if the legal part (individual cases) should be financed by the fund or not. On the one hand it was argued that these individual cases are important but not a necessary part of the campaign. On the other hand exactly these cases were seen as the basis of the whole campaign. Therefore there was no agreement if these cases should be financed by the fund or not. It was also argued that finances for the individual cases could be organised by individual networking.
There was also a discussion on the meaning of political campaign. After having discussed different ideas more or less against each others, it was agreed that they actually belong together and are different aspects of the same thing. It is for example important to have a part of the campaign which addresses the public with posters, cards and slogans, but the individual fights and disobedient actions are also an important part of the whole.
About networking it was said, that the local and regional existing structures are very important. A nationwide huge campaign which cannot be managed by the existing local structures did not make sense to most of the participants, because experience show that such campaigns tend to be shortlived.
There was a proposal to launch the big ‚Marketing’ of the campaign for the beginning to build up a network. Fritz and some other people are going to prepare suggestions and proposals of a concept for addressing the public at the next meeting.
An important part of the whole debate was related to the question of ‚empowering’-process, which is about gathering informations (e.g. legal info) or the exchange of experiences (for example the results and the process of the individual fights made visible) to make sure the ability to act is enhanced. The documentation of racist police controls is also a part of this.
See you at the next meeting from the 20 to 22 of June 2003 probably in