Carding? We’ve got an app for that

By Gerald V. Paul

Thanks to Legalswipe, members of the community will be kept abreast of their rights during interactions with police, so if it’s carding, you’ve got an app for that.

The developer of the application, Christien Levien, who is of Caribbean roots and has experienced being walked up to by police and questioned for no reason said, “I’m definitely not the first; it happens all the time.”

The app has been endorsed by former Queen’s Park speaker Alvin Curling and activist / journalist Desmond Cole, who has long fought for an end to carding.

On his Facebook page Levien, noted he was invited by both CTV and CBC to speak about the shooting of Walter Scott.

“I feel that police violence is a serious issue that needs to be addressed as the devastation it causes is particularly detrimental to members of marginalized communities,” he said.

Levien said that in an effort to find a solution “I have created Legalswipe, a mobile application which provides people with their legal rights.”

He said the app provides appropriate questions to ask and the limits of police power when being interrogated. In addition, it allows one-touch broadcast messaging to emergency contacts and audio / video recording directly to Dropbox.

“I’m working to further develop the app and provide community workshops on legal rights. I ask that you help support this initiative by liking us on Facebook,” he said.

Legalswipe is designed to be fast and simple so that it can be used in real time during a police encounter but Levien said the app’s real value comes before any tense situation.

“This is primarily a tool for legal education. I hope that people are educating themselves prior to any given interaction so they know what their rights are. I do believe that during an interaction, it is possible to tell an officer, ‘This is being recorded, so I expect that my rights will be respected’.”

Gerald V. Paul
Gerald V. Paul