Re: “Fired Up” (GT, 7/7): All of us deserve the benefit of basic human rights, but many of our jailed community members do not have these protections. People in our Santa Cruz County jail have experienced abuse, neglect and violence, including sexual assault at the hands of jail staff. The Sheriff’s Office, which is responsible for operating our jails, has a $90 million annual budget, but no public oversight or accountability. In June, the Santa Cruz County Civil Grand Jury issued a report that described numerous deficiencies in management, resourcing, and efficient oversight. More transparency is needed to improve standards in our jails and rebuild trust with the public.
Join us in demanding that people in custody are treated with dignity and care. Email or call your Supervisor to request that they implement a Sheriff Oversight Commission and/or an Inspector General position. Go to Standing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) in Santa Cruz County’s website at surjsantacruz.com/act-now for details.
Angelee Dion, Natasha Fraley, and Nicole Reynolds | SURJ Santa Cruz
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