An ordinance whose time has come.
Source: USA Today
A San Francisco lawmaker introduced an ordinance that would make it illegal to make a fraudulent, racially-motivated 911 call in response to a number of recent incidents in which white people have called the police on Black people who weren't doing anything wrong.
Supervisor Shamann Walton introduced the Caution Against Racially Exploitative Non-Emergencies, or CAREN Act, Tuesday, which will "make it illegal for people to contact law enforcement solely to discriminate on the basis of a person's race, ethnicity, religious affiliation, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity." The ordinance will also allow individuals harmed by these calls to sue for damages up to $1,000.
"911 calls and emergency reports are not customer service lines for racist behavior, and using these for fraudulent reports based on the perceived threats of someone's race takes away emergency resources from actual emergencies," Walton said at a board of supervisors meeting. "Fraudulent emergency calls against people of color are a form of racial violence and should not be tolerated."
The ordinance's name appears to be a reference to the nickname "Karen" given to many white women seen calling the police on people of color in viral videos. Walton noted several of these incidents occurred in the Bay Area, including the videos of white women dubbed "Permit Patty" and "BBQ Becky" last year.
Racist 911 calls are unacceptable that's why I'm introducing the CAREN Act at today’s SF Board of Supervisors meeting. This is the CAREN we need. Caution Against Racially Exploitative Non-Emergencies. #CARENact #sanfrancisco
— Shamann Walton (@shamannwalton) July 7, 2020
To stop Karens from calling 911 whenever they see a person of color, SF really introduced...
The #CARENAct lmaoooooo 😭😭😭 https://t.co/Fkb9YHw6xr pic.twitter.com/N1GJaoBH93
— Best of Nextdoor (@bestofnextdoor) July 8, 2020
The CAREN Act is a well-crafted acronym of anti-racist legislation:
More thought went into this than all the “Karens” had, put together pic.twitter.com/4Dku3aNLSy
— KCazares 🤙🌹☮️✊ (@cazarespr) July 8, 2020
Every Karen after hearing about the CAREN Act: pic.twitter.com/ZSKdn9TcKi
— Lesbe Anne (@LesbeAnne) July 8, 2020