With funding from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and local taxpayers, police departments across the country are collecting unprecedented amounts of information about Americans. They’re using images from bridge crossings, GPS data, facial recognition, smart video motion recognition, license-plate readers, camera networks and other technology to create or expand surveillance hubs on a citywide or regional level.
The Center for Investigative Reporting is deeply interested in the emerging technologies that could revolutionize policing – and how the public is monitored by the government.
Our team of reporters and producers – Andrew Becker, Matt Drange, Amanda Pike, G.W. Schulz and Ali Winston – will work with CIR editors to uncover this issue, from California’s Silicon Valley to Washington, D.C., and local communities. We’re experts at getting access to crucial documents and making sense of data. Our goal is to harness the power of investigative journalism to produce stories that engage the public, spark action and protect our democracy.
✓ Original, never-before-reported information on how local governments and law enforcement approach surveillance from a team of experienced reporters at CIR. This is long-form investigative journalism rich with data and graphics.
✓ Access to exclusive online discussions with the reporters and behind-the-scenes stories.
✓ Invitations to special screenings and events in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The Los Angeles Police Department’s Real-Time Analysis and Critical Response Division has access to 1,000 surveillance cameras. CREDIT: G.W. Schulz/CIR
• Pursue public records requests and, if necessary, file legal action to uncover important documents on surveillance activities.
• Fund travel to cities and towns across the country to understand how residents are being affected.
• Create community engagement events where local citizens can learn about and debate the rise of surveillance.
• Produce thought-provoking text, video and radio stories for CIR and our high-profile media partners.
New technologies are forcing the public and law enforcement to answer some critical questions: Can police use these new tools to solve crimes without threatening to undermine the nation’s constitutional values? Where are Americans willing to draw that line?
See our previous reporting on the issue: http://cironline.org/surveillance
CIR is an award-winning nonprofit, independent newsroom based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Learn more: http://cironline.org
Since 1977, CIR has relentlessly pursued and revealed injustices that otherwise would remain hidden from the public eye. Our stories arm the public with the facts needed to spark federal legislation, policy changes at all levels of government, public interest lawsuits, reforms in corporate practices and more. CIR investigations are at the center of news reports and community conversations.
In the past year, CIR has won an Emmy Award, a George Foster Peabody Award, a Barlett & Steele gold award, two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, a George Polk Award, two Investigative Reporters and Editors Awards for multiplatform journalism and an Edward R. Murrow Award for investigative reporting. CIR also was a finalist for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize Gold Medal for public service.
CIR’s surveillance team includes staffers Andrew Becker, Matt Drange, Amanda Pike and G.W. Schulz and freelance correspondent Ali Winston.
Christa L. Scharfenberg
Thanks for your support for The Center for Investigative Reporting’s project to find out the true story of government surveillance on the local level. We’ve raised nearly $5,000 so far!
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