Petition to defund SJSU police department draws hundreds of signatures

Calls for reform and defunding law enforcement have led to a petition drive at San Jose State University.

More than 225 faculty, staff and students have signed-on to a form to defund that university’s police department, immediately.

Organizers say most private institutions of higher learning do not have a police force, and the money can be better used on for student resources.

“What we would like the funds to go to is us, as a community,” said Dr. Nikki Yeboah, an assistant professor in the Communications Studies Dept.

“Having police on campus is not a given. There are other ways to protect our student body and our faculty and our community, that don’t involve the police.”

A university spokesman sent an email response reading in part the university is committed to, “...Creating space for processing, listening and deep understanding, to address institutional racism at SJSU.”

University President Dr. Mary Papazian has committed to forming an advisory board by mid-July.