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Indybay Feature
Mon Jul 18 2016 (Updated 09/21/16)
Call Goes Out to Let Oaklanders Vote on a Strong Police Accountability Measure
New Oakland Police Commission Ballot Measure to Take Its Final Form in City Council Vote
UPDATE: The City Council voted to put the Police Commission on the ballot (now known as Measure LL), but went with the weakest language for any elements of the proposal that faced opposition from police, labor unions, or the mayor.

For the past thirteen years, Oakland taxpayers have spent over $30 million on Federal oversight of the police department because rogue police officers known as the "Riders" profiled, harassed, abused, and planted drugs on hundreds of Black people. OPD corruption and coverups continue to this day, even with Federal oversight.

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 further and faces new threats from the City Attorney and the Oakland Police Officers' Association (OPOA). The City Attorney, Barbara Parker, has told the City Council that the power to discipline officers should be removed from the measure to avoid a threatened lawsuit from the OPOA.

The Coalition for Police Accountability, the Anti Police-Terror Project, Color of Change, and others are calling for Oakland residents to turn out in large numbers at City Hall to stand up and demand a strong police accountability measure appear on the ballot this fall. The Coalition for Police Accountability created a list of "Seven Changes Needed" for which Oakland residents can advocate, not even counting the latest challenge to the commission's potential disciplinary power. For instance, the currently proposed measure jeopardizes the commission's independence by allowing the Mayor to directly appoint three members. An additional issue to watch for is whether language remains denying police officers a position on the commission.

The Time to Act is Now for Strong Police Accountability in Oakland | pdf Tell Oakland City Council: Let the Cops be the Bad Guys | Oakland City Attorney Advises Gutting Police Commission | photo Labor Working to Undermine Strong Civilian Police Oversight in Oakland

See Also: Message to Oakland City Council Members Regarding Conflicting Police Oversight Proposals | To the Oakland City Council: Let The People Vote! | Tell the Oakland City Council: Put Police Accountability Measure on Ballot

Related Feature: Oakland Justice Coalition Pushing for Radical Change at the Ballot Box
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