L.A. Super Bowl Host Committee Gives Grant to Activists Seeking to Abolish School Police

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Getty Images/Rob Carr

The Los Angeles Super Bowl Host Committee has awarded a grant to a group of activists who have the abolition of the Los Angeles School Police Department as one of their goals.

The host committee announced their list of grants to community organizations and coalitions on Thursday. Among the 56 organizations selected to receive grants was the Brothers, Sons, Selves Coalition (BSS). The committee explained their reasoning for the grant by citing the group for “making a transformative impact in underserved communities.”

The BSS self-describes as “a group of ten community-based organizations” with a mission “to end the criminalization of young bois/boys and men of color by creating and influencing public policy that invests in young people and their future.”

However, a closer look at what the BSS actually does, reveals that the group seeks to “decriminalize” and “invest in young people” by divesting and defunding the police.

Specifically, the BSS is actively seeking to force the Los Angeles Unified School District to do away with its police force.

The plan of the BSS and their partner organizations, which include the Los Angeles chapter of Black Lives Matter, is to force lawmakers to redirect L.A. School Police funding to such initiatives as “school climate officers,” “Black-centered courses,” and “restorative justice counselors.”

Though not completely successful in their ultimate aim of L.A. School Police Department abolition yet, the BSS and their allies have effectively forced the school board to cut $25 million from the LASPD budget. In addition to removing officers from school campuses, a move that resulted in the termination of 133 positions within the department.

After announcing the list of grants, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said he was proud to help “shine the Super Bowl spotlight onto the achievements of local community organizations that often go unrecognized.”

That “help,” provided by the host committee, will consist of “a $10,000 grant award, a professionally produced marketing video spotlighting their organization, and public recognition of their work in the lead up to the Super Bowl.” In addition, six of the 56 groups who received grants will be selected to receive a $50,000 grant at a later date.

The NFL became increasingly active in the area of social justice after establishing a 10-year, $250 million fund after the national anthem protests led by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

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