Californians deserve a voice and a seat at the table when it comes to law enforcement’s acquisition of surveillance technologies. Unfortunately, that is rarely the case in California, where law enforcement’s use of this technology invades our private lives and has played a nefarious role in the federal government’s racist deportation campaign and tearing California families apart. It’s time to bring transparency, oversight, and accountability for law enforcement’s use of technologies — such as drones, social media surveillance, and license plate readers — which allow police to track and even detain us as we go about our daily lives.

SB 1186 restores power to local communities and makes sure our voices are heard. SB 1186 requires public debate and a vote by local elected leaders prior to law enforcement’s acquisition of new surveillance technology. The bill also requires written rules for existing surveillance technology in order curtail the possibility of civil liberties and civil rights abuses by local law enforcement. With SB 1186, California can finally say no to an intrusive police presence and the secretive surveillance that enables it.


August 16, 2018 Held in Assembly Appropriations Committee
June 26, 2018 Passed Assembly Judiciary Committee
June 19, 2018 Passed Assembly Public Safety Committee
May 31, 2018 Passed Senate floor
May 25, 2018 Approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee
April 17, 2018 Approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee
April 3, 2018 Approved by the Senate Public Safety Committee
February 15, 2018 Bill introduced


A California City Fights Off ICE’s Digital Deportation Machine - February 13, 2018

ACLU of California – Making Smart Decisions About Surveillance: A Guide for Community Transparency, Accountability & Oversight - April 2016

Santa Clara County Passes Groundbreaking Law to Shine a Light on Secret Surveillance - June 7, 2016


Senator Jerry Hill





Bill number



Stay informed

ACLU of Southern California is part of a network of affiliates

Learn more about ACLU National