ALL Out to City Hall: Tuesday October 25th

Last week on on October 4th, we successfully blocked City Council from expanding gang injunctions to Deep East and West Oakland and from hastily imposing youth curfews and anti-loitering laws. City Council has moved this suppression policing package to the Public Safety Committee, which will meet on Tuesday, October 25th. It’s up to us to stop them.  

Time and time again, we show up to City Hall & show City Council what real people power in Oakland is. Each time we mobilize we get even stronger. We are so close to a victory that will no doubt seriously shift power in our city, so that we can build the city we want & need.

Please come out to the Public Safety Committee meeting & tell council:

We cannot police our way out of poverty!

Our Oakland, Our Solutions!

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 25TH

5:30PM

OAKLAND CITY HALL – 14TH & BROADWAY

Reclaiming Our Community

Santi, a member of Xicana Moratorium Coalition, talks at the 8/7 Block Party about how we can unite and reclaim our communities by taking pride in our art and culture, and connecting community members to resources and information.

Examples of organizations that use art & culture to connect community members include: Eastside Arts Alliance, Intertribal Friendship House, and Dignidad Rebelde.

How have YOU seen art & culture used to connect community members? PLEASE COMMENT BELOW!

Video Of the City Council Meeting

Click Here to watch footage of the City Council meeting. The public comment session starts at 2:20 and a presentation by Stop the Injunctions Coalition starts at 3:40.

Also, check out Beyond Gang Injunctions, a recent community discussion on why some organizers in the coalition are a part of this fight, produced by the National Radio Project.  Click Here to listen.

Widespread community turnout at Oakland City Hall!

May 17th was a significant and inspiring show of people power in Oakland!
Thank You for packing City Hall and for standing up in defense of our communities. Your phone calls and emails to City Council made an impact. Whether you went up to the mic to speak, ceded time to someone else or held up a “Stop the Injunctions Now” sign, your work and presence helped amplify the voices of many different communities in Oakland in this crucial fight to be heard and recognized.

At least 300 people packed City Hall Tuesday night to oppose the preliminary gang injunction in North Oakland and the proposed Fruitvale injunction.  The public comment included 30 Oakland organizations, 160 individuals, and a 25 minute Power Point presentation by the our Coalition outlining their opposition to the injunctions and offering solutions to violence and economic problems facing Oakland.

City Council’s Vote

may 17th city hallThe City Council voted to continue bleeding Oakland’s already dry budget by funding the injunctions. Council members Larry Reid, Libby Schaff, Pat Kernighan, and Ignacio De la Fuente all voted to fund a watered-down version of the injunctions, while Nancy Nadel, Desley Brooks and Rebecca Kaplan voted to defund them.

Many of the sentiments of the residents opposing the injunctions were echoed by council members Nancy Nadel and Desley Brooks.  Brooks spoke with anger and disappointment at the OPD, The City Attorney, and even her fellow council members.  “Facts ought to lead the conversation,” said Brooks. “You know factually [the injunctions] haven’t worked. We have to stop selling the public remedies that do not work.”

We walked out Tuesday night with a resolution from the Council to not spend money on any new injunctions without independent evaluation. Council also decided that no resources are to be expended adding anyone new to the Fruitvale injunctions (meaning “John Does” won’t be added to the Fruitvale injunctions). This is crucial considering City Attorney John Russo raved about ramming at least 10 injunctions throughout Oakland before the end of 20

Building People Power

5/17/11 oak city hall – More than 30 organizations came through to support the coalition by voicing opposition to the injunctions, many of which had not yet publicly denounced the injunctions before.

- Nearly 160 people shared their opposition to the injunctions and what they want for our city in clear, passionate, and politically sharp ways.

- About 300 people came out to show their opposition and packed City Hall, the majority of whom stayed passed midnight–long after most of pro-injunction supporters left.

-Youth continue to show a tremendous amount of leadership in this fight and have regularly played a pivotal role in speaking out to City Council.

-We prevented the agenda item from being pushed to the end of the meeting.

-We got through to Nadel and Brooks, who used the Stop the Injunctions Coalition’s evidence and arguments in discussing the issue with the rest of the Council.

-While the City Council can vote to pay for injunctions, they don’t have the power to impose injunctions or make them permanent.  There is still no permanent injunction in place in this city.

Stop the Injunctions Coalition and all of the support hundreds of people have given in the past 18 months has clearly made an impact and put the Council on the defensive.Together we are building a dynamic movement against the gang injunctions and the violence of policing that will carry us through the next stages of this fight and beyond.

Our Oakland, Our Solutions!

3 point plan pt 2
One of the coalition’s central demands is for community self-determination. This means that our struggle is for the long haul, and has to draw in the strongest possible community participation. When we stand and work together we grow our collective strength for self-determination. Tuesday night shows us that we are in better shape than ever to move our work forward. Our fight has shifted but has definitely not ended!

Week of Action in Review

 

“We want education, we we want education! Keep us out of jail, keep keep us out of jail! No police violence, no no police violence! Stop the gang injunctions, stop STOP THE GANG INJUNCTIONS!”

-Youth chant as they marched to City Hall to voice their demands and stop the injunctions.

MONDAY– 2/28 Press Conference @ Fremont Federation of Schools

Speakers included:

Betty Olson-Jones, President of the Oakland Education Association; Candice Valenzuela of Media College Preparatory High School in the Fruitvale; and Jackie García of Xicáno Moratorium Coalition will speak out against the injunctions and draw attention to trade offs in the City’s budget priorities.

For photos from Press Conference click here!

TUESDAY– 3/1 Our Communities! Our Solutions! Bike Rides around the “Safety Zones”

Cyclists ride through the “safety zone” to protest gang injunctions (North Oakland)

Pictures from North Oakland Ride

WEDNESDAY– 3/2 Day of Education & Youth Concert

“We want the funding that is going into these gang injunctions to be going towards our education, after school programs, thing that will actually be helping out community.” -One of the Youth who was part of the High school walk out that kicked off the Friday rally.

THURSDAY– 3/3 Stop ALL Violence Vigil @ Lake Merritt

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

FRIDAY– 3/4 Rally to Stop the Gang Injunctions @ City Hall

Youth March and Rally Pictures

Scores rally at Oakland City Hall to protest proposed Fruitvale gang injunction

Information and Pictures from Rally

Overview of Week:

KPFA Report and Interviews **go to around 7 mins, after headlines

Oakland Tribune My Word: Oakland residents must stop the gang injunctions (Angela Davis op-ed)

Interview about the Gang Injunctions

Coverage of the Bike Rides against Injunctions

Last Tuesday, March 2, two bike rides traversed the North Oakland and Fruitvale “safety zones” to protest the injunctions in Oakland.  Over 30 riders biked through the North Oakland “safety” zone, stopping at just a few of locations in North Oakland that have been part of Oakland’s radical organizing history, such as the stoplight at 55th and Market (read the article to find out why stoplight is so rad!).

The North Oakland ride was a real fun evening that generated lots of conversations with folks on the sidewalk, traveling in cars and waiting at bus stops.  Good outreach, sharing of history, and unpoliced movement in the streets.  It also gave us some first-hand examples (*ouch*) of what better ways Oakland could use our money: fix the roads, fill the potholes!!! Let’s really make safer streets for all!

Please email stoptheinjunction@gmail.com if you have any photos of the Fruitvale or North Oakland rides that you want to share.

Last stop at the It's All Good Bakery, former headquarters of the Black Panther Party (Oakland chapter)

Read Oakland North’s coverage of our North Oakland “safety” zone and Black Panther Party history ride here.

UPDATE: Public Safety Committee Meeting 2/22

Thanks to all that turned out last night as we packed City Hall with youth, parents, elders, teachers, organizers and community members from all walks of life! Special thanks to United Playaz and the Oakland Education Association for showing up and opposing the gang injunctions!

For those that didn’t stay until the bitter end, here is how it turned out:

We made 50+ presentations on every angle of the injunctions.  Nancy Nadel was the first Councilperson to speak, and she stated that she is against the injunctions.  Kaplan spoke next, and stated she had questions about the lack of City Council authorization for the injunctions.   Larry Reid refused to comment.  Pat Kernighan then stated that she wanted to see how the injunctions worked out, and would re-evaluate in a year.

Kernighan also stated that she did not want to see any new injunctions until the first two could be evaluated. Then, Nadel made a motion to schedule a vote on the injunctions.  Kaplan seconded.  But Reid and Kernighan voted “no,” so there is not yet a vote scheduled regarding authorization/deauthorization of the injunctions.

VIDEO: Public Safety Committee Meeting 2/22

We can claim some victories: We came out in great numbers to show our opposition and voice our own solutions to harm & violence in our communities, Kernighan doesn’t want to see any new injunctions until the ones on the table can be further evaluated, and Nadel is the first Councilperson to go on record against the injunctions.

Legal Team Introductions

As the court hearings are now in full force, we would like to take a moment to introduce the legal team that is representing defendants against the East Oakland gang injunction.

Dennis Cunningham has been a civil rights attorney since the 60s. He helped found the Chicago People’s Law Office, and participated in numerous cases involving protesters and protest movements, prisoners and prison rebellions. Notable cases include the infamous “weapons raid” on December 4, 1969, in which Illinois Black Panther Party leaders Fred Hampton and Mark Clark were shot to death, and the defense of dozens of prisoners falsely accused as “ringleaders” of the rebellion at the Attica State Prison in western New York in 1971. He helped represent protesters in mass arrests in the 1984 Democratic Party convention, anti-nuke actions at Site 300, anti-apartheid demonstrations in Berkeley San Francisco, the police sweep of Castro Street in 1987, Central American solidarity actions in the 80s, the Rodney verdict protests in 1992, Food Not Bombs, ActUp, Religious Witness with the Homeless, and others.

Jose Luis Fuentes practiced law for the Working Peoples Law Center in the Echo Park area of Los Angeles, specializing in criminal, family and community law, and now works at the prominant civil rights law firm, Siegel & Yee. Mr. Fuentes has served in a leadership capacity in community and legal organizations, including serving as past president of the National Lawyers Guild, Los Angeles Chapter; People United For A Better Oakland; Bay Area PoliceWatch; Constitutional Rights Foundation; Barrister Domestic Violence Clinic; Students for Justice for Palestine and Homies Organizing The Mission To Empower Youth.

Yolanda Huang has been practicing law in the bay area for over 25 years as a criminal defense and civil litigator. She has vast experience defending the rights to liberty for young people.  The daughter of Chinese immigrants, she started school in New York City speaking no English.  “Learning to read and write English was the hardest thing I ever did.”  In high school, her parents moved south of Washington, D.C., and there Yolanda Huang experienced the end of segregation and the successes of the civil rights movement.  Active in the anti-Vietnam War movement, and the effort to save the I’Hotel, Yolanda Huang went on to attended Boalt Hall Law School, in order to develop better tools to make social change.  In 1999, Ms. Huang organized and wrote the first grant that led to  Berkeley School Board adopting a policy to ensure that no child is hungry, and that the food served in schools should, whenever possible, be organic.   “Every child should eat quality food free from pesticides and chemicals.”

Michael Siegel is an associate attorney with Siegel & Yee. He is currently working on several matters including claims of wrongful termination, disability discrimination, race discrimination, and retaliation for exercise of First Amendment rights. Prior to entering the legal field, Michael worked as a teacher in Oakland, California and Brooklyn, New York, and served as a union representative in the Oakland Education Association. He was also a co-founder and executive director of Oakland Leaf, a local nonprofit education organization focused on “community transformation through creative education.”

Jeff Wozniak, a native of San Francisco, is an aggressive criminal defense lawyer with a progressive and compassionate approach to practicing law. Before starting his own firm, Jeff worked under notable criminal defense lawyers, including Stuart Hanlon. This experience allowed him to develop important relationships throughout the bay area criminal justice community. He has a strong belief in the importance of pro-bono work, and dedicates a substantial portion of his practice to such work.

Estelle Davis is an East Oakland resident who comes to the legal team with an avid energy for social justice. On the legal team she helps prepare legal filings, and aids in communications between the legal team, community members, and defendants on the case. Estelle has always worked for the empowerment of young people, having worked in public health, public high schools, drop-in centers for street involved youth, LGBT helplines, and peer health education projects. Estelle grew up in the Bay Area, and is happy to be home after a 5 year stint in Boston [Roxbury, represent!].

We hope to see all of you come out for the two big events this week: Public Safety Committee on Tuesday at 5:30PM at City Hall, and Preliminary Injunction Court Hearing on Wednesday at 2:00PM at Alameda County Superior Court, Department 1.


En lucha,

The Legal Team