There are mixed reactions from Berkeley residents after the city council voted to install surveillance cameras in a popular park.
The decision comes after a series of shootings in the park over the past few years.
Some city officials say the cameras would deter crime and violence. But a lot of people aren’t so sure about that.
A lot of people are not convinced that cameras would even deter the kind of violence and shootings the city is looking to prevent. They point to the fact that the shootings are often targeted and have happened during the day with a lot of people in that park.
So, according to them, if people, potential eye-witnesses, didn’t discourage the shooters, why would surveillance cameras? That is one of the points made by Councilwoman Cheryl Davila who represents the district that encompasses that park.
She says she wants input from the neighborhood before any cameras are installed.
Davila is also concerned that the cameras will be used to criminalize people of that are already disproportionately targeted by law enforcement.
And that is a worry that is shared by people who live around the park as well.
Surveillance is a sensitive issue in Berkeley. In March, the city passed legislation that required surveillance technology to be approved by the city council and be subject to citizen oversight.
The park is often filled with families and children.
And there is some support for the cameras but likely a lot of pushback as well.
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