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A coalition of local and community groups hosted a town hall in the East Bay town of Rodeo on March 7, drawing over 150 people to discuss the risks of a proposal by Phillips 66’s San Francisco Refinery in Rodeo to bring in more oil tankers and process more heavy crude oil like tar sands. The tar sands expansion proposal would impact local health and the climate by increasing refinery emissions and worsening air quality for nearby communities while also increasing tanker traffic and the risk of a devastating oil spill in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Thu Mar 14 2019 (Updated 03/16/19)
San Francisco Bay Area Says Hands Off Venezuela
Venezuela has been in the crosshairs of the U.S. since 1999 when Hugo Chávez began implementing socialist reforms. Upon Chávez's death in 2013, Nicolás Maduro was elected President. Maduro's second inauguration was on January 10, 2019. On January 22, U.S. Vice President Pence offered Juan Guaidó the presidency of Venezuela and Guaidó then appointed himself "Interim President." Trump recognized the self-appointment, in effect instigating a coup against the Bolivarian government. Protests and marches have been held in the Bay Area to demand the U.S. take its "Hands Off Venezuela." On March 16, thousands marched in D.C.
UPDATE 2/26: County Leaders Dump “Urban Shield” Name, Adopt Vast Majority of Committee Recommendations

An Alameda County task force recommended Urban Shield be transformed from a highly militarized SWAT competition and weapons expo into a community-focused safety exercise. The Sheriff's Office and other law enforcement agencies are expected to push back hard when the recommendations come to a vote on Tuesday, February 26. Urban Shield opponents say a large "Stop Urban Shield" presence at the meeting is important, but that you can also reach out to Supervisors and tell them not to buckle to the pressure.
Wed Feb 20 2019 (Updated 03/10/19)
Oakland Teachers Shut It Down
UPDATE 3/3: Oakland Education Association members vote to ratify new contract with OUSD, return to work on 3/4.

Oakland teachers are the lowest paid teachers in Alameda County. Students are under-resourced with only one academic counselor per 600 students and 21 nurses for all 37,000 students. Oakland teachers are demanding smaller class sizes, more student support, a moratorium on charters, no more school closures, and a living wage. To fight for those goals, teachers went on strike city-wide on Thursday, February 21. There are morning and afternoon picket lines every weekday. Teachers and allies request folks to join them on the line and show solidarity at mid-day rallies.
Sun Feb 17 2019 (Updated 02/19/19)
Remembering Sahleem Tindle
BART police officer Joseph Mateu shot Sahleem Tindle three times in the back, killing him on January 3, 2018. Ten months later, District Attorney Nancy O'Malley released a report declaring that she would not bring any charges against Mateu. To mark the one-year anniversary of the slaying, Sahleem's family and activists with the Anti Police-Terror Project gathered at the West Oakland BART station. After two hours in front of the station, protesters stormed inside, leading BART to close it. The family is still pursuing a civil case against BART and Mateu.
On January 19, at women's marches throughout the Bay Area, the focus was on unity rather than the rift in the national group. Optimism was abundant despite a slight decrease in attendance over last year. The marches were not without critics who cited a lack of attention to the plight of the underhoused and other issues effecting women. Unlike the city of New York where there were two separate marches, however, a spirit of solidarity ruled the day.
Mon Jan 21 2019 (Updated 01/24/19)
Reclaiming King's Radical Legacy
For the 5th year running, the Anti Police-Terror Project called Bay Area residents into the streets for the People’s March to Reclaim Martin Luther King Jr’s Radical Legacy. In Oakland, events ran from 8am to 8pm. San Francisco marched in honor of MLK and several labor unions spoke out against outsourcing and privatization. Fresno and Santa Cruz also marched. Other events were held in cities across Northern California.
Wed Jan 16 2019 (Updated 02/19/19)
Get Up, Get Down! Oakland Is a Union Town
On January 12, several thousand teachers, students, staff and supporters marched and rallied in Oakland to defend public education and call for increased funding. The Oakland Education Association contract has expired and teachers are discussing striking in February. In Los Angeles on January 14, tens of thousands of teachers went on strike. Oakland teachers are promising a wildcat strike on Friday, January 18.
Tue Jan 15 2019 (Updated 01/16/19)
Qilombo Community Social Center Evicted
Qilombo members have been locked out of the community center they've maintained for over four years. Landlords attempted to push Qilombo out almost as long as they've been there, with the current corporate landlord refusing to renew their lease since 2016. Qilombo resisted displacement until Alameda County Sheriff's deputies showed up without warning and padlocked the building on January 9.
Mon Jan 14 2019 (Updated 02/17/19)
Trump Shutdown Increasingly Harms Low-Income Renters
UPDATE Jan 25: Hours after staffing shortages forced LaGuardia Airport to cancel all incoming flights, Trump agreed to end the shutdown for 3 weeks.

As a result of Trump's government shutdown 70,000 to 85,000 low-income households already face possible higher rents or eviction. By the end of January, the shutdown will affect another 30,000 to 40,000 low-income households. If the shutdown continues past February millions of public housing and Section 8 renters will be placed at risk of higher rents or eviction because HUD does not have any funding to cover those programs in March.
Tue Jan 8 2019 (Updated 01/09/19)
Oscar Grant Honored at Fruitvale BART Station
On January 1, 2009, 22-year-old Oscar Grant was shot in the back by BART Officer Johannes Mehserle while he lay face down. In response to angry street rebellions and years of protest, Mehserle was charged with murder and ultimately convicted of involuntary manslaughter. On the first day of January ten years after his murder, Oscar's mother, friends, and supporters gathered for a vigil at Fruitvale BART station where he died.
January 1, 2019, marked ten years since the murder of Oscar Grant by BART police officer Johannes Mehserle. A number of news pieces have been produced to commemorate the anniversary, but it's rare to see significant tribute paid to the fact that were it not for efforts of protesters and activists, Oscar Grant would have received little to no justice. Thousands of people raised their voices for justice for Oscar Grant.
Sat Dec 29 2018 (Updated 01/13/19)
People's Park Is Under Assault
A video captured on December 21 shows UCPD officer Sean Aranas violently assaulting someone hanging out in People's Park. Aranas pulls him up and throws him to the ground. UC Berkeley has long wanted to develop the park and deny public use. The university has been whittling away at the foliage and, on the morning of December 28, forty-one trees were destroyed. The unannounced predawn timing was apparently calculated to avoid protests. A vigil was held on December 29 in response.
Wed Dec 19 2018 (Updated 12/30/18)
Kaiser Mental Health Care Workers' One Week Strike
Headquartered in Oakland, Kaiser Permanente is the state’s largest health care provider. For five days, over 100 Kaiser clinics and hospitals were affected by strike activities as mental health care employees called for the provider to step up levels of staffing. Approximately 4,000 psychologists, therapists, social workers, psychiatric nurses and addiction medicine specialists went on strike at Kaiser facilities throughout California.
The Alameda County Sheriff’s Office had drones on the scene for many high-profile protests in Berkeley and on the University of California Berkeley campus throughout 2017, at the request of the Berkeley and UC police departments. The Contra Costa County Sheriff deployed drones over immigrant rights rallies outside the West County Detention Facility in Richmond, which houses detainees for ICE.

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