Following images and videos of police using issued bikes as riot control gear and as weapons against protestors, Fuji Bikes has suspended the sales of their bikes to police forces in the U.S. Fuji announced their decision via Instagram over the weekend.
“Fuji’s core values have always been rooted in supporting communities and organizations that are making real change at home and abroad. To hear that there are instances where bicycles have been used as a weapon against those who are vulnerable, those speaking out against the unjust treatment of people of color, and those standing alongside them advocating change, has deeply upset our community, our company and the heart of the Fuji brand.”
“We support many diverse organizations and athletes–not for marketing stories, but because we truly want to make a difference in our community. To have these efforts overshadowed by cases of violence with bicycles is unacceptable.”
Fuji attributes the decision to images and videos where police across the country have picked up their bikes and used them to control crowds, hit protestors, or construct makeshift barricades.
Fuji says that this isn’t a permanent decision, but that they need to readdress how police are using their bikes.
“In an effort to make real change, we are beginning a dialogue with police departments nationwide to address how bikes are used in police activity and to ensure that police’s on-bike training reinforces that bicycles are not a weapon against our community. At this time, we are suspending the sale of Fuji police bikes until a conversation with these departments has occurred and we are confident that real change is being made. We also must stand together against the mistreatment and abuse of the Black and Brown community.”
Frame bag maker Revelate Designs says that they are also ceasing their sales to a supplier who sells their Ranger frame bags to police departments.
“We are shocked, sickened and outraged by the images circulating of bicycle police forcibly using their bikes against protestors in major cities. For the last few years Revelate has sold our Ranger frame bags to a vendor that supplies bike gear to several major police departments. We will not be complacent and ignore police brutality and excessive force against black people that are being committed by those with a badge. Today we are ceasing that relationship and line of business.”
NBC 6, a Miami news station documented Miami Police Department’s Bike Response Team response to protestors, and how they train to handle riots. The police department deploys bicycling officers to form barriers and to push protestors back.
Video in their opening report, and many other photos circulating shows officers using their Trek police bikes to shove and hit protestors. Shortly after, people began calling across social media for Trek to cease sales of their bikes made for police forces. Trek hasn’t made any official statements on their police bike program, but according to a company email written by Trek CEO John Burke that was shared with Singletracks, it appears that they will be continuing the program.
“Lastly, I have received a number of notes questioning Trek’s police bike program. I take pride in the fact that we supply police departments across the country. The vast majority of police officers do an amazing job and put their lives on the line every day to keep our communities safe. I know some current and former police officers and Secret Service agents who are amazing people. The few who abuse their positions of power should be held accountable and should be brought to justice swiftly.” Burke added that he wants to do more than just say they’re going to do something.
“It bothers me, when organizations and companies release statements about their concern over the current situation and do NOTHING. All they do is check the marketing box, for those who hang out on social media. That is not how we have operated for 44 years and it will not be how we operate in the future. In this highly charged atmosphere, facts matter even more.”
Congrats to Fuji for being an industry leader and responding with empathy and a commitment to do more. I’ve seen the full email that Burke wrote and am disappointed that this article chose to cherry pick quotes from it. What about the part where he somehow uturned his response into a sales pitch for his book?
I think some inquiry of why he’s so eager to defend police (hint: $$$) in the first place, and so impervious to discussion about their product used repeatedly in documented police brutality would be beneficial. To me, it sounds like he values his ego first, his police contract second, and the majority of his customers last.
Thanks for the comment, Gabriel. I picked out the quotes that were most relevant to the topic on police bikes, and he does plug his book in the email, but it’s also free…I’m sure that they are making decent money from their program, but I would also be surprised to see Ford or Chevy yank contracts because the NYPD drove through a group of protestors.
I would like to hold motor vehicle manufacturers accountable when their products are used as weapons as well, but I don’t work in that space, I work with bicycles and recreation.
If bike and car manufaturers should be held accountable for actions taken with their products, should BLM be held accountable for the looters?
Typical pandering nonsense. ONE guy uses his bike to push back a bunch of protestors and pussies lose their shit. Just ignore the 100K plus looters, rioters and people burning down buildings. I hope you city disbands their police force so you can fend for yourselves.
Mtnryder, as noted in the article, there are many instances of this happening across the country, not just the Twitter video which shows it happening in NY.
Police* uses sandwich as self defence
Subway* suspends food for those who protect and keep our homes safe
Country* goes anarchy
Spaceman-That’s funny and says it all. Hope they defund the police and the world can see how necessary they are and what savages come out of theit holes.
If we can shift a majority of public funding away from police forces and toward social workers and related services, the cops won’t have the cash to buy SUV’s and bikes to hit protestors with. There’s ample research to suggest that most police work would be better served by social workers and unarmed crisis responders.
This recent NPR interview with three Black men from South LA offers several plausible solutions/alternatives to antiquated policing models.
I agree with this, I agree with non violent programs, on both sides of the problem
Take funding away from the police so they are understaffed and over stressed? NPR as your source, come on Brian use a little common sense. Maybe watch less TV and Radio produce by liberals and get a real view of life. Boycott Fuji seem like a better way to look at this. Have a crowd of angry protestors charge you and I’d bet you’d have your bike up in defense also.
Okay Gdb49, I know I shouldn’t, but I’ll take the bait this one last time–simply because you might appreciate the following article written by a former police officer. I shared it with my uncle who is a cop and he said it’s unfortunately 100% accurate.
Brian, that is truly an unfortunate article and I believe stuff like that happens and needs to be fixed. I just disagree with your solution. Better training for police, more support from the communities, better staffed police to lower stress and on the other side we need to punish bad officers to the fullest. But, not made up crap from irresponsible leader like BLM and Al Sharpton. Every sector has its percentage of bad guys and I don’t see anyone taking responsibility for all the bad things being done by the protestors??? If you don’t commit a crime and resist arrest the odds of you being in one of these horrible situations is very low- still we need better. The focus needs to be on improved training, I can’t imagine keeping my cool if attacked by a large group of people- it’s got to be terrifying. A decision made under duress is never going to be as good as one you make with time and thought. Where is your outrage for the small business person who has been vandalized? All police are not bastards, that is a ridiculous and overreaching statement. Most go out with the full intent to keep their community safe. I think researching big cities and the way they effect behavior would be worthwhile. The violence at the end is the result of the problem and we need to dig deeper and resolve the source. Police are not the problem, it’s the issues facing people in their daily lives. Get rid of the leadership the is now in place for the protestors and start an honest conversation. This is not a white only problem. Let people speak who disagree with you without labeling them.
Please… bike as a weapon?? ROFL!! Take away their armored personnel carriers, assault weapons and stun grenades. THOSE are the weapons that need de-funded. Thanks… Bush/Obama… you armed them to the hilt and here we are.
Fuji is part of International Police Mountain Bike Association (IPMBA) and Law Enforcement Bicycle Association (LEBA). They attend the instructor conferences. They know exactly how LEOs were trained to use their bikes….didn’t seem to have an issue with it before
They didn’t, and that’s on them. Fortunately, people and the companies they work for and run can change. This is a direct example of the positive impact of activism happening right now.
Good for Fuji
Speak Truth – A message that needs to be heard
That was supposed to be a link- type it in.
This is a video worth watching.
To be truthful I’m not sure how I feel about Fuji’s decision. I read the study on police violence done in 2015 by Dr Robert Fryer, a black professor at Harvard, and in his report it appeared that the vast majority of police interactions with the public are peaceful – a policeman draws a weapon in only 0.26% of interactions and the use of a baton is 0.02%. I would urge anyone to read this article (warning – it’s over 50 pages long with a ton of statistical analysis but the opening discussions are pretty understandable), which is available on-line and uses data from the New York stop and frisk program, the Houston records and LA records among others. In this study the odds of force being used on citizens who were compliant during an arrest was 20% greater if the arrestee was black. In this study also the use of lethal force surprisingly did not show a racial difference (don’t attack me, read the study – I’m just reporting). In another study it was estimated that 30% of the time when a Black person is pulled over he would not have been stopped were he white. There definitely is a problem which needs to be addressed. The police definitely need to have greater accountability. However, in 2018 150 officers lost their lives in the line of duty, and I am damn certain I would not want to be a police officer, and I wonder how many folks demonizing the police right now would or could do the job.
Rather than pulling resources away from the police, more resources to ensure accountability and more training in de-escelating rather than escalating encounters might be more fruitful.
I’m not well enough versed in this to know but suspect if we had no police we’d be back to the days of the wild west. Here is a link to Dr Fryer’s study: https://scholar.harvard.edu/fryer/publications/empirical-analysis-racial-differences-police-use-force
I know nuance was banned in 2017 in the only bipartisan bill of the past decade, but I’m going to risk it:
Police have established beyond a reasonable doubt that they have the creativity and determination to continue to execute their policy of brutality regardless of the tools they are provided. This will continue until the foundational culture changes in ways that we cannot predict now.
Given that situation, the VERY WORST thing we can do is force police to use transportation options that are better suited for use as weapons – like cars and motorcycles – and further separate cops from incidental human contact with the communities they “serve.”
Further more, in the video that led to the outrage, the bikes appeared to be a net impediment to the police’s ability to inflict harm on the protesters. The individuals who caused the most damage abandoned their vehicles and utilized the designed weapons at their disposal. If we’re concerned about the use of weapons against protesters, then we should be demanding that cops be forced to carry bikes everywhere based on the actual evidence.
But of course it’s not like anyone cares about protecting protesters or taking a meaningful stand. Just make sure you brag on the internet about how strong your knee can jerk and nobody will complain.
I support police over crime. If you play stupid games you have the opportunity to win stupid prizes.