Portland's Black Cross Health Collective will be training people to provide First Aid at demonstrations, rallies, actions and police riots. Unfortunately, as the WTO protests in Seattle, the infamous June 1, 1997 police attacks in Eugene, and too many other events have shown, an increasingly militarized police force is being used more and more frequently by corporate-owned government institutions to squash dissent, even when the method of dissent is legal or non-violent. (Of course, if you are poor or a minority in the U.S., you don't need to attend a protest to become a victim of police brutality.) |
It has become standard operating procedure to have medics within the activist ranks at demonstrations whenever possible for dealing with injures. Volunteers are always needed. The Black Cross Health Collective is one group that offers First Aid training for these circumstances, and their next session in Portland will be on Saturday, May 18, at the Liberty Hall (311 North Ivy) from 1:00-6:00 p.m. Participants will learn how to do basic assessments, transport victims and deal with chemical weapons exposure (pepper spray and tear gas), as well as how to work in teams and other necessary skills. Organizers are asking people to bring "an open mind, comfortable clothes and shoes you can run in". Despite the similarity in names, the Black Cross Health Collective is not affiliated with the Anarchist Black Cross. "Some of us are anarchists, some are not. Fight the Power, Do No Harm."
The training is free but donations may be solicited for use of Liberty Hall.