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!