On June 18, Jose Velasco filed a legal claim for damages against the City of Salinas and the Salinas Police Department for the injuries he suffered after officers with the SPD violently arrested him on June 5. The claim alleges, "assault, battery, false imprisonment, negligence, negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress, and negligent hiring," on the part of the city and the police department.
The Homeless Services Center announced in June that due to the withdrawal of State administered federal emergency funds, they were laying off workers and a large portion of the services they offer would most likely be eliminated if alternative funding was not found. Shortly after the announcement, the Santa Cruz County Grand Jury released a new report titled: Recipe for Failure: Shrinking Budgets and Increasing Needs for Emergency Homeless Shelters.
The farm worker movement mourns the passing on June 7, 2015, of Rev. Deacon Sal Alvarez, who played a key role with Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta in the farm worker movement and on behalf of many other worthy causes over seven decades. Sal was motivated by deep faith in a movement grounded in the Catholic Church’s social justice teachings and dedication to Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Environmental groups petitioned the California Fish and Game Commission to protect the Humboldt marten under the California Endangered Species Act. The Humboldt marten is a cat-sized carnivore related to minks and otters that lives in old-growth forests in Northern California and southern Oregon. Most of the marten’s forest habitat has been destroyed by logging, and the remaining martens in California likely number fewer than 100 individuals.
Demouria Hogg, a 30-year-old father of three, was killed by Oakland police on June 6 at the intersection of Lakeshore and Lake Park avenues in Oakland. Mr. Hogg was asleep, or unconscious, in his car at the intersections when paramedics were called, but when they arrived and saw a gun on the passenger seat, they called the police instead of helping. OPD tried to wake Mr. Hogg up for about 1.5 hours, and ultimately shot and killed him within 1 minute of "making contact" with him.
Community members in Santa Cruz gathered at the Town Clock on June 14 to rally and share information about climate change in order to encourage individuals to take the Climate Mobilization pledge, which demands a "WWII scale" effort by society to create a 100% clean energy economy by 2025.
Local residents rallied in Santa Cruz on June 14 to oppose the Catholic Church's plans to canonize Junipero Serra this September, which was approved by Pope Francis. Serra presided over the brutal California mission system during its founding in the 18th century. The purpose of the rally was to educate the public about the Native American lives that were lost at the missions and the torturous conditions that were imposed there, as well as to encourage community members to contact Priests and other religious and spiritual leaders, including the Pope.