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Fri Aug 19 2016 (Updated 08/20/16)
Protect Our Right To Stay: No Suban La Renta
Renter protections are on the ballot for voters to vote on this coming November in the cities of Oakland, Richmond, Alameda, Burlingame, San Mateo, and Mountain View. On August 8, the Alameda Renters Coalition (ARC), tenants and other community members rallied to protest against no-cause evictions — and evictions at the Bay View Apartments in Alameda. Tenant advocates across the Bay Area are urging renters to vote on strong renter protections during the upcoming November elections, urging people to vote against weak proposals placed on the ballot by the City Council in Alameda and Mountain View.
Plaintiffs Anne Weills, Mollie Costello, Allyssa Eisenberg, and Tova Fry were taken to Santa Rita Jail after being arrested for civil disobedience in 2014. The Four were held with other women in filthy jail cells. Toilets were overflowing. There were no menstrual pads for women who needed them, no garbage containers so used menstrual pads sat on top of left over food. All the women in those cells are “presumed innocent”. The Four and their attorney Yolanda Huang filed a civil rights complaint in order to be a voice for other women and demand they be treated with respect and human dignity.
Sat Aug 20 2016 (Updated 08/25/16)
No Dakota Access Pipeline
The Standing Rock Sioux Nation is calling out to all indigenous nations of the world to stand in solidarity with them as they fight yet another pipeline on tribal lands. Some 250 supporters are camped along the reservation border, tribal youth have completed a run to Washington with petitions against the pipeline, and the battle against Bakken Oil has drawn the attention of environmental groups, tribal people and individuals from across the country. A demonstration of solidarity took place in San Francisco on August 24.
Sat Aug 20 2016 (Updated 08/25/16)
A Call to Action Against Slavery in America
Prisoners across the United States, including in Alabama, Mississippi, Ohio, Virginia, and elsewhere, are calling for a strike on September 9. Their call to action states: On September 9th of 1971 prisoners took over and shut down Attica, New York State’s most notorious prison. On September 9th of 2016, we will begin an action to shut down prisons all across this country. We will not only demand the end to prison slavery, we will end it ourselves by ceasing to be slaves.
In July, the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office withdrew its sponsorship of a "Bulletproof" street survival training course for law enforcement officers after community activists questioned whether the former "Bulletproof Warrior" class should be offered by the department. Urban Shield, the controversial police militarization exposition and training, is scheduled for September 8 in Pleasanton. The Stop Urban Shield Coalition is calling for a mass demonstration on September 9.
In June, the Santa Cruz County Grand Jury released its report on the death of 23-year-old mother Krista DeLuca, who died in the main jail on September 29, 2015. Shortly after the release of the Grand Jury report, DeLuca's family filed a civil lawsuit against the County of Santa Cruz. Besides the County, the lawsuit lists as defendants the Sheriff's Office, Sheriff-Coroner Jim Hart, Under-Sheriff Jeremy Verinsky, Chief Deputy Jeff March, Lieutenant Kelly Kent, and California Forensic Medical Group, Inc. (CFMG), as well as a list of unspecified "John Does".
Davey D writes: I was alerted to an inflammatory story from Bay Area ABC news reporter Dan Noyes that basically sought to disparage the Black August celebrations. The story noted that "police sources" had leaked a memo to him stating that prison guards and police were gonna be attacked by members of the Black Guerilla Family in celebration of Black August. Many found the allegations to be outlandish.
In the wake of the Chinatown homeless sweeps that displaced hundreds of people in downtown Salinas in March of this year, a small but thriving tent community has established itself at Salinas City Hall, where a group has been camping out every night for over four months. An anti-camping ordinance was recently passed by the Salinas City Council that allows for the city to quickly remove "bulky items" stored on public property, and outlaws setting up tents on public property between the hours of 6am and 6pm.
Thu Aug 4 2016 (Updated 08/14/16)
Boycott Driscoll's Won't Stop
On August 6 and 7, 2016, local activists engaged thousands of people at the 22nd Annual Watsonville Strawberry Festival to raise awareness about the Driscoll's Boycott and the harsh realities of farmworkers who pick the precious berries. A banner declaring "No More Blood Berries" was displayed from the third-story of the Lettunich Building on Saturday and from the roof of the Mansion House on Sunday while shouting, "Boycott Driscoll's" and "No More Blood Berries." The buildings are the most iconic structures in downtown Watsonville and stand as subtle reminders of the apple growing, packing, and export industry in the Pájaro Valley. Both buildings are Santa Cruz County Historical Trust Landmarks on Main Street and overlook the Watsonville Strawberry Festival.
The Freedom Sleepers celebrated their one-year anniversary together on July 5 with a march through downtown Santa Cruz, and then an outdoor movie screening at Santa Cruz City Hall. After celebrating their one-year anniversary, the Freedom Sleepers have returned to Santa Cruz City Hall for three more sleepouts. The most recent was their 55th community sleepout on July 26. Since July 4 of 2015, a coalition of unhoused and housed community members in Santa Cruz have converged to sleep at city hall one night a week to protest local laws that criminalize homelessness.
A call went out for Freedom Now protests on July 21 targeting the support infrastructure for police oppression, especially police "unions" for their defense of cops accused of brutality. Lockdowns and demonstrations were held in cities across the country. In Oakland, the offices of the Oakland Police Officer's Association were shut down and an entrance to Oakland police headquarters was locked down. A Black Lives Matter educational event for children was held in Oscar Grant plaza, followed by a march down Broadway.
It has become a tradition to celebrate the life of Frank Alvarado with flowers. On July 10, Frank's family was joined by a large group of supporters near the location of his death to mark the second year since his killing by Salinas police. His father, Frank Sr., handed out roses to many of the women gathered, saying the gesture was in memory of "lover boy" as he lightheartedly referred to Frank. His family fondly remembers how dearly Frank loved to give women gifts, and especially the gift of flowers.
Jeronimo Yanez, the officer who shot Philando Castile in his car in Minnesota, took a training course called "The Bulletproof Warrior" less than two years ago. The evidence suggests that this course, and courses similar to it, offered by a private company called Calibre Press, are even worse than Urban Shield — the organized para-military and terror response training put on for police by the Alameda Sheriff's Department. The course Yanez took is now called "BulletProof" and it's coming to San Jose this August 17 and 18.
Thousands are marching for Bernie Sanders' platform at the Democratic National Convention this week in Philadelphia. On July 24, San Francisco activists held a protest in solidarity with demonstrators at the DNC as part of a national day of action, "March for Bernie USA." Marchers gathered in the Mission district cheered and shouted when they heard breaking news from one of the rally leaders that Wasserman Schultz would be resigning as party leader. Bernie Sanders and supporters have long been critical of Wasserman Schultz for not playing a neutral role during the Democratic primaries.
In front of Oakland City Hall on July 11, Leigh Davenport of the Anti Police-Terror Project announced community activists' intention to recall Mayor Libby Schaaf. Primary among the concerns cited as cause for Schaaf's removal from office are her failures: 1) to address the massive displacement of long-time Oakland residents; 2) to support local youth and job centers; and 3) to hold Oakland police accountable for corruption, sexual exploitation, and those they've killed. “The level of discontent is high in the City of Oakland," notes Cat Brooks.
A November 2016 ballot measure for a new Oakland Police Commission was expected to be finalized and approved by the Oakland City Council at their meeting on July 19. Instead, it will be July 26. The measure, originally proposed by the Coalition for Police Accountability and since taken up by the City Council, continues to be watered down and faces new threats from the City Attorney and the Oakland Police Officers' Association (OPOA). Community groups are calling for Oakland residents to turn out in large numbers at City Hall to stand up and demand strong police accountability.
On July 6, activists in Sacramento held a vigil memorializing the 47 people killed in Canada in the Lac-Mégantic Disaster three years ago. The Sacramento Oil Trains Coalition, including 350 Sacramento, ANSWER, Sac Activist School, and STAND, organized the event. The Central Valley rally and vigil was one of over 40 actions the same week across the U.S. demanding a halt to plans to run these explosive “bomb trains,” carrying fracked Bakken crude oil from South Dakota, through cities across the nation.
A report released on July 8 by the Xerces Society shows a sharp two-decade decline in the number of monarchs which overwinter along the California coast. A comparison of the average number of butterflies overwintering in California during the periods 1997–2001 and 2010–2014 shows a decline of 74 percent, a figure that is comparable to declines documented at monarch overwintering sites in Mexico. Listed sites span the monarch’s overwintering range along the Pacific coast and the East Bay of San Francisco
Mon Jul 11 2016 (Updated 07/20/16)
Bay Area Solidarity with Rebels in Oaxaca
Mon Jul 11 2016 (Updated 07/20/16)
Solidarity March in San Francisco with Oaxacan Uprising
Los Insumisxs writes: A teachers strike that began on May 15 has grown into a widespread rebellion in the Mexican state of Oaxaca. 14 compañeros have been killed by the state, including 12 in a massacre on June 19. Join us on Friday, July 15 at 7pm at the 24th St. BART Plaza in San Francisco to mark two months since the strike began as we march in defiance of state repression and in solidarity with our compañerxs on the barricades in Oaxaca.
Tue Jul 12 2016 (Updated 07/18/16)
New Wave of Black Lives Matter Protests Nationwide
The back to back caught-on-video police murders of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge on July 5 and Philando Castile in St. Paul on July 6 kicked off a new wave of Black Lives Matter protests across the country. The people of Baton Rouge and St. Paul have been protesting daily since the killings. Solidarity actions have been held in cities across the country and internationally. Communities have staged rallies, marches, and vigils across Northern California as well. Multiple demonstrations have been held in Oakland, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, San Jose, and Watsonville.
Mon Jul 11 2016 (Updated 07/21/16)
Justice for Teo: Rally and March in Newark
Justice for Teo writes: Please, join us [on July 14] in a peaceful-family friendly vigil/rally and march for our Brother Teodoro Valencia Jr.. Teo was a loving son, brother, uncle and friend. On March 11, 2016 Teo was wrongfully killed by the Newark Police Department. He was shot intentionally in the back with an AR-15 assault rifle. Our family's goals are to bring justice for Teo, as well as truth and light to the darkness that the police have been using to mislead and oppress our community.
In a first-of-its-kind decision and a victory for police accountability and transparency, an Alameda County judge has ruled that a public agency can't charge excessive fees for police body worn camera footage. The public interest served by the disclosure outweighs the financial burden of the city to produce the footage, Alameda County Superior Court Judge Evilio Grillo ruled. The court ordered the city of Hayward to refund to the NLGSF the entire $3247 cost, except a $1 charge for a DVD.
The Anti Police-Terror Project has issued a call-out for all police officers ready to speak up about illegal, unethical or biased conduct by members of the Oakland Police Department or other City staff or officials to take a stand now. Their legal team at the Siegel & Yee law firm has created a hotline to call to report such conduct and can provide legal advice for those who may face retaliation, protecting whistleblower anonymity.
Thu Jul 7 2016 (Updated 07/09/16)
Peace and Dignity Journeys 2016: Dedicated to Seeds
Every four years since 1992, Peace and Dignity Journeys runners traverse the Western Hemisphere by foot, carrying stories, songs, and prayers, re-uniting Indigenous communities step by step. Departing simultaneously from Chickaloon, Alaska and Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, the journey culminates seven months later with a final ceremony in Panama. On July 6, runners were received by the community of Santa Cruz at the Beach Flats Community Garden.
Count for Freedom Sleepers Reaches 60 Nights Out Keith McHenry (story by Norse) Tuesday Aug 30th 12:32 AM
Sea Otter Shootings in Santa Cruz County Central Coast Animal News Monday Aug 29th 5:34 PM
RCNV and Santa Cruz NAACP Party with Cop Who Broke Elderly Woman's Arm Black Lives Matter in Santa Cruz (1 comment) Monday Aug 29th 2:04 PM
Bummer Bernie Bylaws dogwood (2 comments) Friday Aug 26th 4:58 PM
Scott Sternberg of Beverly Hills is behind Richmond’s mass evictions Lynda Carson (1 comment) Thursday Aug 25th 4:45 PM
Santa Cruz SEIU Candidate Forum Aug. 24,2016 AutumnSun (2 comments) Thursday Aug 25th 2:01 PM
1.8 Million Acres of Sierra Nevada Habitat Protected for Imperiled Frogs, Toads Center for Biological Diversity Thursday Aug 25th 10:18 AM
Mayor Schaaf Accused of Promoting Acting Police Chief Without Notifying Public Ken Epstein, Oakland Post Wednesday Aug 24th 7:52 PM
Stop massive and possibly illegal statewide tree cutting by PG&E! via Valley Women's Club of San Lorenzo Valley (4 comments) Wednesday Aug 24th 1:33 PM
Winnemem Wintu Tribe supports the Standing Rock Sioux Protectors Winnemem Wintu Tribe Tuesday Aug 23rd 4:21 PM
Freedom SleepOut #59 as RV Rights Struggle Continues Keith McHenry (story by Norse) (1 comment) Tuesday Aug 23rd 10:10 AM
Hacker houses are proliferating in the Bay Area Lynda Carson (1 comment) Monday Aug 22nd 10:34 PM
Grazing in National Forest Restricted to Protect Rare California Frogs, Toads Center for Biological Diversity Monday Aug 22nd 4:23 PM
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Report: Sea Turtle Nesting Beaches at Risk due to Climate Change Joanna McWilliams Monday Aug 29th 10:21 AM
Generation Y Doesn't Fulfill Expectations Thorsten Schroeder Monday Aug 29th 4:34 AM
This Week in Palestine, August 26th, 2016 IMEMC Sunday Aug 28th 9:30 PM
September 9th National Prison Strike The Ex-Worker Thursday Aug 25th 11:51 AM
Unemployment is (not) a Full-time Job Ilse Leide-Krapfenbauer (1 comment) Thursday Aug 25th 8:47 AM
Lawsuit Launched Over California Cities' Killing of Threatened Santa Ana Suckers Center for Biological Diversity Monday Aug 22nd 4:29 PM
Louisiana Floods: in their own words, stories and how to help WTUL News & Views Monday Aug 22nd 6:08 AM
The Unending Story of the Achievers Bruno Rossmann and Joerg Reitzig Monday Aug 22nd 4:44 AM
This Week in Palestine, August 19th, 2016 IMEMC Saturday Aug 20th 8:50 PM
Citizen Reporting of Great Louisiana Flood of 2016 WTUL News and Views Thursday Aug 18th 8:51 AM
No Dakota Pipeline - tribes push back against yet another threat to clean water Corina Roberts (1 comment) Wednesday Aug 17th 2:35 PM
Hearing in Lawsuit Compelling USDA to Pull Foie Gras From Shelves via Animal Legal Defense Fund Tuesday Aug 16th 6:20 PM
The Politics of My OSC Complaint At OSHA/DOL Darrell Whitman Monday Aug 15th 9:55 AM
The Digitalization of Labor Patrick Stary Monday Aug 15th 7:07 AM
This Week in Palestine, August 12th, 2016 IMEMC Sunday Aug 14th 2:40 PM
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Argentina: Solidaridad sin fronteras por la autogestión obrera reenvio de Red Latina sin fronteras Tuesday Aug 30th 2:08 AM
Blue Whale Strike of 2009 Scott Peterson Saturday Aug 27th 7:23 AM
How to cool your house without Air-conditioning by Robert Tronge Robert George Tronge Friday Aug 26th 12:03 PM
Stop War With Russia! SOS Friday Aug 26th 7:22 AM
The Shortwave Report 08/26/16 Listen Globally! Dan Roberts Thursday Aug 25th 5:22 PM
MILITARY ACTION IN TURKEY KURTULUS BASTIMAR Wednesday Aug 24th 5:14 AM
Doctors of denial...8-23-16 Mouse Report DJ Mouse (1 comment) Tuesday Aug 23rd 1:47 PM
Destroyed families, Destroyed lives, All because of a lie Robert George Tronge Tuesday Aug 23rd 12:49 PM
Drew Glover for Santa Cruz City Council 8-21-2016 Event #2 AutumnSun (1 comment) Monday Aug 22nd 4:32 PM
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