Creating an Oakland for all of us requires that we walk the talk about equity. This week, I attended the City's final community meeting about its Equity Indicators Report. Oakland's grade of 33.5% is an epic failure for racial equity. Oakland can do better than this.
Under Oakland's current administration and city council, the number of people living in homelessness has grown by nearly 40%. Nearly 3/4 of people without homes in Oakland are Black. More and more of our neighbors are living in tents under freeways every night.
This is unacceptable. The Equity Report gave Oakland a grade of 1 out of 100 in homelessness and an "F" overall in housing. No surprise here: the Equity Report attributes these failures to the City's misuse of resources, plus unchecked gentrification, lack of affordable housing, and discriminatory lending.
The Equity Report also concluded that the City of Oakland's policy of over-policing Black communities and bias in OPD has led to dismal racial disparities independent of the crime rate. Oakland received a grade of 1 out of 100 in public safety and economic equity categories including incarceration, use of force by police, and arrests of young people.
What we need is action. The current city council and the so-called 'bold values' of the administration just won't cut it anymore for Oaklanders suffering from the housing crisis and over-policing.
With less than 100 days until the November election, it's time to step up the fight for an Oakland for all of us. Join me at our campaign office opening on Grand Avenue next Saturday, August 11th at 10am!
- I will fight for a public lands policy that prioritizes Oakland's vacant public lands for affordable housing, rather than the largest commercial landlords.
- I will push for funds to fight displacement and provide housing for our homeless neighbors. The current administration budgeted $0 until community pressure and certain city council leaders pushed to budget our values.
- I will act to make sure we use the resources we have for legal eviction defense and rental assistance, quickly and effectively. The current administration sat on the $2.2 million available for these services for more than a year, despite advocates demanding accountability and answers from the city council.
I am here for win-win solutions for Oakland. But it's up to us - the thousands of Oaklanders who have had enough of the status quo that is dragging us backward. We have a unique opportunity in this city to get it right, rather than settle for the way things are. Together, we can lead the nation and build real progressive political leadership in Oakland.