Save Money, Save Lives—Audit Sheriff Ahern
Over the past 10 years, the Alameda County jail population has decreased by half—so why is the sheriff's budget increasing?
Under Sheriff Ahern’s "watch" there have been increasing deaths in the jails, abuse of people by sheriff's deputies, and support of white supremacists from his department. Yet his budget continues to grown by $144 million in the last decade, totalling to $404 million this year. Meanwhile, people in power aren't investing in the resources our communities really need—like housing, jobs, healthcare, education, and more.
Alameda County residents deserve a budget that prioritizes investment in long-term public safety solutions that can improve the health and well-being of all people. That’s why we’re calling on an audit of Sheriff Ahern’s Department to reveal how he is spending taxpayer dollars, improve transparency and accountability, and uncover potential savings that can be invested directly back into our communities.
We want to build schools, not prisons; cultivate parks, not jails. We are asking community members to make phone calls, send letters, and set up meetings with your Alameda County Board of Supervisor. Take action by signing the petition and find out how you can organize with us by becoming a member of the Ella Baker Center today.
Invite us to present this issue at your faith-based congregation, union hall, neighborhood group, etc. by contacting our Organizer and Advocate Tash Nguyen: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why an Audit?
The Alameda County Board of Supervisors has a responsibility to make sure the Sheriff’s budget is being spent effectively to promote community safety—continuing to increase the Sheriff’s budget is not making us any safer. The Sheriff's Department currently uses taxpayer dollars to:
- Collaborate with Trump and ICE, and hands immigrants in the jail over to ICE authorities through the deportation system known as the Priority Enforcement Program
- Operate as a private prison and profit off of the incarceration of people of color by renting out jail beds to other counties and the US Marshals
- Host Urban Shield, a SWAT training and weapons expo that promotes militarism and creates more terror in our communities.
An audit provides an opportunity for our county officials to reallocate resources toward services that improve our health and wellbeing, and ensure our safety:
- $100,000 would provide 1,000 HIV tests in community-based clinics.
- $1.3M would provide after-school programming to 1,000 students for 1 year.
- $27.8M would house over 1000 individuals in a market-rate apartment for a year.
- $10M would house 300 of Alameda County's poorest families for a year in a subsidized apartment.
Please contact our Organizer and Advocate Tash Nguyen for more information: email@example.com.