News and Events


Pull your pants up!! Documentary viewing

When: November 4, 2016, Screening: 6:00 p.m. – 6:30, Q & A 6:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Where: Level 13, 341 13th Street, Oakland

Educator and humanitarian Tracy Jenkins articulates his views on sagging pants, and communicates important reasons how this style of dress can be detrimental, ranging from potential health hazards and employment discrimination to how society as a whole identifies the wearers of this fashion style. Through interviews with others who voice their opinions, Tracy strives to give viewers his food-for-thought awareness. Click here to view the website for additional information.   Cost $5 (Suggested Donation)    Contact:


FREE Art Therapy group

When: Thurs Nov 3rd, Thurs Nov 10th  12:30pm – 2:00 pm
Downtown Oakland, Call for details 510-986-8600 x 317 (Space is limited.)

A Safe Place is hosting a FREE Art Therapy group for PTSD, trauma, and survivors of domestic violence. The aim of the group is to provide a creative outlet for processing difficult emotions and beginning to heal from the effects of trauma.  Click here to view the flyers for additional information.

Our mission at A Safe Place is to break the cycle of domestic and family violence by providing battered victims and their children with safe shelter and resources and to prevent violence through outreach and education to at-risk populations.






Roots Community Health Center – Empowerment Initiatives

Healthy Measures: Helps formerly incarcerated individuals with chronic illnesses achieve successful, healthy reentry. Participants receive support and coaching from Roots Health Navigators who have also experienced incarceration. Benefits include: individualized health plans, benefits enrollment, health education and navigation, probation compliance support and barrier removal. Click here to view the flyer.

To apply, email or call 510-777-1177.

Emancipators Academy: Now accepting applications! An 8-week program offering stipends, on-the-job training in manufacturing at Roots’ soap-making social enterprise, Clean360, leadership skills and mentorship. Participants (called Emancipators) receive assistance for barrier removal, support for benefits enrollment, and connection to health care and other services. To be eligible, applicants must have been released from incarceration within the past 12 months, must be unemployed, and must be able to lift 40 lbs. Click here to view the flyer.
To apply, email or call 510-904-8048.

Defy Ventures

A non-profit organization that works with individuals who have had previous criminal justice involvement (18+ years and older) to create new pathways for economic sustainability.  Defy’s CEO of Your New Life program focuses on job readiness/job placement, personal wellness, reentry coaching and entrepreneurship. Specifically, Defy helps individuals create profitable enterprises that sustain them and their families over time. We support emerging entrepreneurs in the launch of their enterprises by offering intensive hands-on entrepreneurship training, character development, mentoring, business incubation, financing opportunities and holistic personal development services. If you know of any interested candidates, please have them contact Melissa O’Dell at or by visiting

Oakland Adult & Career Education is happy to be adding a new College and Career Readiness Pathway Program, in coordination with the Northern Alameda Consortium for Adult Education. Through a sequence of courses, adult students will be prepared with basic English, math, English-as-a-Second language and study skills to successfully transition to academic and career technical education studies in the community college, or to gainful employment. The Oakland Adult & Career Education staff has served Oakland adult students over the past years, and this new College and Career Readiness Pathway Program will provide another needed educational opportunity in our community.  Click here for additional information.

Career Online High School

Scholarships are being offered at Oakland Public Library and Alameda County Library for adults (age 19+) to earn a high school diploma and career certificate through Career Online High School. Enrolled students will take classes online, be supported by an academic coach, and build a career portfolio. Scholarships are limited.

  • Oakland Program: Open to residents in Oakland, Emeryville and Piedmont. Contact
  • Alameda County Program: Open to residents in Ashland, Cherryland, San Lorenzo, Newark, Union City and Fremont. Contact

Apply Now –

NPower’s TechCareer is hosting a tech-related training opportunity accelerated program at the College of Alameda. In eight weeks students will be certified in ITIL and ServiceNow to launch their SaaS (Software as a Service) career. They will also be trained in JavaScript in order for them to create cloud-based applications. This is a no-cost program for veterans and young adults. Click here to view the flyer and apply.



As the base point of origin of the Black Panther Party, one of the most iconizing forces of the Civil Rights Movement, Oakland is once again alive with events and activities paying tribute on their 50th Anniversary.

Legacy: A Tribute to the Black Panther Party

bpp-trib-life-is-livingThis year marks the 9th Annual Life Is Living Festival in Oakland. Over the past 10 years, we have transformed deFremery Park (Little Bobby Hutton Park) from vacant to vibrant. We are indebted to the local West Oakland heroes and sheroes of The Black Panther Party for inspiring us to use culture as a vehicle for social change. That said, we are honored to pay tribute to the enduring legacy of The Black Panther Party at this year’s Festival.

Through efforts such as The Free Breakfast Program, we re-dedicate ourselves to sustaining the Panther’s revolutionary commitment to community generated solutions. From babies to grandparents, Life Is Living believes in intergenerational dialogue that honors the wisdom of children and elders. Our partners have been engaged in a year long process to envision, strategize and create a Festival that is inclusive, dynamic and democratic.

We hope you will join us for what is to be a beautiful day as we honor the 50 year legacy of the Black Panther Party.

When: Saturday, October 8th
Where: deFremery Park



October 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Black Panther Party.

flyer-bpp-50th-top-1024x856An ad hoc committee of former members of the Party is hosting events commemorating the anniversary from October 20-23rd in Oakland, California.

The theme of our commemoration is “Where Do We Go From Here?” The Black Panther Party is well-known and admired in Oakland and around the world for its stand against police brutality, for its Survival Programs— which included free breakfast for school children and free health clinics—its coalitions with other people of color, and its effort to bring about revolutionary change in America. The anniversary events will explore and celebrate the history and legacy of the Black Panther Party.

We hope you will join us in commemorating this historic 50th anniversary by participating in the various workshops and panels of the conference, enjoying our wonderful dinner and gala, advertising in our souvenir program book and volunteering.

When:  Friday, October 22, 2016  7:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Where:  Oakland Museum of California




18th Annual Self As Super-Hero Exhibit selfsuprhero

When: Sat., Oct. 1st, 1-3 p.m.
Where: FLAX Art & Design, 1501 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Oakland (map)

We invite you to come celebrate another successful exhibition with us!
Free. For more information: 510-867-2324.


The Poetics of Fragility with Angela Davis and Cherrie Moraga

When: Sunday, October 2, 6:30pm, – 9pm
Where: Omi Gallery 2323 Broadway, Oakland $15–$20.


The Poetics of Fragility is a 63-minute “videocontemplation”  -an audiovisual medium for philosophical inquiry on the power and aesthetics of fragility; screening and in-person conversation between filmmakers Grandi and Mani and their collaborators Angela Davis and Cherrie Moraga.


The Power of Cooperative Ownership 

When: Tue., Oct. 4, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Where: Cooperative Center Federal Credit Union 2001 Ashby Ave.

Gain insight into the process of converting a business to a cooperative and meet a business owner who is making the transition and workers in a coop.  Free










Renovated Opera House a Boon for Bayview


When the Bayview Opera House reopens this weekend after a $5.7 million renovation that took nearly three years, the celebration will be well deserved.

There’s also much that still should happen — not only to bring the 1888 landmark to its full potential, but also to lessen the gap in resources between the Bayview and the rest of San Francisco, a disconnect that helps explain why the Opera House’s resurrection has proceeded so slowly.

“I feel ecstatic — it has been such a long haul,” said Barbara Ockel, executive director of Bayview Opera House Inc., the nonprofit that manages the facility for the San Francisco Arts Commission.

Ockel has been in the post since 2008, beginning as interim manager when she happened to be the board member of the nonprofit willing to take on the job. That was midway through the stop-and-start makeover of the facility, which began life as a Masonic Lodge performance hall. In the early 2000s it was touted as a portal to a multiblock “town center,” while in 2007 the “ultimate renovation” of the Opera House was announced at an event that included then-Mayor Gavin Newsom.

A ceremonial ribbon-cutting was held in July, but things will finally get going after the “grand reopening” Saturday. Schoolchildren will head to Third Street and Newcomb Avenue several afternoons each week for arts-related programs. The restored auditorium also will serve as a concert venue, starting with an Oct. 2 appearance by the chamber orchestra Sphinx Virtuosi.

“We have a chance to see this become a real cultural facility,” said Theo Ellington, an Opera House board member who grew up in the neighborhood and still lives there. “When I close my eyes, I see a place programmed year-round — something that reflects the deep roots and history of the Bayview while also bringing in new people,” with events for couples and families several times a week, instead of several times a month as will be the case while getting up to speed.

That sense of possibility exists because of arduous work by believers and bureaucrats. Staffers at the Arts Commission and the Mayor’s Office on Disability found ways to keep the project moving forward. The designers involved — TEF Design and Knapp Architects, with landscape architect Walter Hood taking the lead outdoors — made sure the end result was as pleasing as could be.

“A lot of people fought really hard to make this happen,” said Deborah Frieden, a consultant who worked on the project for more than a decade. “For what we had to work with, we achieved a lot.”

>>Read full article


“Yes on Measure JJ” Campaign Kicks Off to Protect Oakland Renters

Dozens gathered at Lake Merritt to distribute window signs and to talk to community members about voting Yes on Measure JJ. Photo courtesy of the Committee to Protect Oakland Renters.
Photo courtesy of the Committee to Protect Oakland Renters.

Dozens gathered at Lake Merritt to distribute window signs and to talk to community members about voting Yes on Measure JJ. Photo courtesy of the Committee to Protect Oakland Renters.

The “Yes on Measure JJ” campaign kicked off last Saturday at Lake Merritt, as dozens of community members and local leaders gathered to show their commitment to making sure renter protection passes in Oakland this November.

With less than seven weeks before the elections, the Committee to Protect Oakland Renters—a coalition of local housing rights, labor and interfaith organizations—is gearing up for its campaign to spread awareness among voters.

“The campaign is planning to hit the streets and go into neighborhoods, especially with high voting impact, and to also do a voter registration drive,” said James Vann of the Oakland Tenants Union and Post Salon Community Assembly.

“The committee knows that voter registration is fairly low in the flatlands and other neighborhoods where renter protection is most needed,” he said. “That’s where we’re going to have to pull a lot of votes.”

Twenty local organizations are spearheading the campaign efforts to pass Measure JJ and register Oakland voters, including SEIU Local 1021, California Nurses Association, ACCE Action, Causa Justa: Just Cause, Asian Pacific Environment Network (APEN), PolicyLink and the Ella Baker Center.

The ballot measure also has the endorsement of many local politicians, the Alameda Labor Council and the Alameda County Democratic Party.

Locally, there is broad support for the need to pass a strong renter protection law in Oakland and the City Council made a unanimous decision to place the measure on the November ballot.

However, committee members are expecting a highly visible opposition campaign, funded by state and national real estate groups.

“We’re definitely expecting these non-local groups to come out strong, and we’ve estimated they’re going to spend around $3 million to fight this measure,” said Camilo Zamora of Causa Justa: Just Cause.

The estimated spending by anti-rent protection organizations is based on what they have done in other California cities that have put renter protection measures on the ballot in the past, said Zamora.

Already, sources have told the Post that people are receiving phone calls for an anonymous “push” poll opposing the renter protection measure in Oakland.

It is for this reason that this group of community organizations will need all the help it can get, Vann said.

“We’re reaching out to the faith community and other local organizations and asking that they endorse the measure and make it a priority issue in their community,” said Vann.

“Spread the word and reach out to us to help get people registered to vote,” he said.

To get information on how to endorse, volunteer or become a part of the “Yes on Measure JJ” campaign, visit

>>Read full article



Demand for Living Wage Jobs Agreement at Port of Oakland Rally Continues


Carroll Fife (left) and Jahmese Myres spoke Thursday at a community meeting to demand living wage jobs at a new Port of Oakland warehouse development. Photo by Ken Epstein.
Carroll Fife (left) and Jahmese Myres spoke Thursday at a community meeting to demand living wage jobs at a new Port of Oakland warehouse development. Photo by Ken Epstein.

More than six weeks of intense negotiations between the community coalition and the port have focused on the first warehouse in the project, which could produce up to 120 jobs. The warehouse, proposed to be built by CenterPoint Properties, would provide logistics space for transferring and loading cargo and distribution services on a 27-acre plot of the 185-acre Oakland Army Base parcel that belongs to the port.

“More is at stake, however, than the local hiring agreement for jobs at this first warehouse. This agreement is likely to become the model for local hiring at other warehouses and companies that will be built on the port property, according to organizers.”

CenterPoint is a private Chicago-based company, but it is owned by CalPERS, a state agency that manages public employee pensions, including those of many local residents who are SEIU members.

Members of the coalition held a public meeting last Thursday evening at Taylor Memorial United Methodist Church in West Oakland to report to the community on the progress of negotiations.

“As a community coalition, we are holding the port to their promise to do the same or better” than the jobs agreement signed by the city for its portion of the army base development, said Jahmese Myres, campaign director for the Revive! Oakland Coalition, which includes labor, community and faith-based groups.C. FifequoteBx

What is being discussed, she said, is 50 percent local hire and 25 percent for disadvantaged workers in the port’s “local impact area,” and cities Oakland, Emeryville, Alameda and San Leandro.

“The port is hoping to strike a deal by Sept. 22, but there are still a lot of outstanding hot issues. We need to ramp up our organizing and our pressure on CenterPoint… to get a better deal than we did with the city,” said Myres.

Also speaking at the meeting was Margaret Gordon of OaklandWorks and West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project.

She explained that the “roots of the planned project” can be traced back to developer Phil Tagami and then Mayor Jerry Brown.

When the U.S. Army closed the Oakland Army Base in 1999, the land was divided between the port and the City of Oakland. Tagami won the contract to develop the city’s side of the property.

“All of this is public money –the roads, electrical lines, the sewers,” she said. “The developer has not had any private money doing anything – it’s free infrastructure. Now they are talking about building a (private) warehouse.

“The recycling companies, truck parking, warehouses – there are all jobs.”

Carroll Fife of OaklandWorks, who chaired the meeting, underscored the importance of winning a good jobs agreement.

We have an opportunity to set a precedent on how jobs are distributed to Oakland residents,” she said. “There is an ethnic cleansing that is happening in the city right now, and we have to say we aren’t having it.”

Kitty Kelly Epstein said that “local hire” agreements so far have not meant that Black people are getting hired. “This is our public money, and Black people are not getting jobs on city-funded projects.”

She said reported data show that African Americans are only getting 5 percent of construction jobs on city projects.

The coalition of organizations is holding a protest Thursday, Sept. 8 at noon to demand that the port sign a jobs and community benefit agreement with the community. The protest will be held at the meeting of the Port Commission, 530 Water St. in Oakland.

>>Read full article


Source: Ken Epstein‎9‎/‎2‎/‎2016




Jobs and Community Benefit Agreement Rally  

When: Thursday, September 8, 2016  12 Noon
Where: 530 Water Street  Oakland, CA


13th Annual Healthy Living Festival   

When: Thursday, September 15, 2016  8 a.m. – 2 p.m
Where:  Oakland Zoo  9777 Golf Links Road  Oakland, CA  94605


Bayview Opera House Grand Re-Opening

When: Saturday, September 17, 2016 from 2:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Where: Bayview Opera House Ruth Williams Memorial Theater
4705 Third Street San Francisco, CA 94124




Oakland Army Base Project

Unions, Community Groups Hope to ‘Revive’ Oakland with Jobs Agreement at Army Base Project

“A good-jobs agreement should be mandatory, due to the use of public funds, including the pension system’s assets.”  -Kimberly Moses, speaks at a rally outside the Port of Oakland headquarters last week.

ArmyBase-Kim Moses
Photo by Joel Angel Juarez.

Longtime West Oakland resident Shirley Burnell used to work at the Army base, and she remembers it as a hive of economic activity. It employed hundreds of nearby residents and hired local businesses as contractors. It pumped millions of dollars into the East Bay. And, at its height, it was part of the economic bedrock upon which Black West Oakland built its prosperity.

>> Read article here





Art & Soul Festival Downtown Oakland

3T+ArtSoul.pngJoin the fun at he 16th annual Art + Soul festival with music, art and fun on the streets and plaza in front of Oakland City Hall. This year’s festival is headlined by Oakland’s own Tony Toni Toné and the Oakland Public Conservatory of Music. The City-sponsored festival also includes gospel, blues, circus and dance stages, an artisan marketplace, an instrument petting zoo, Family Fun Zone and the Oaktown Throwdown BBQ competition.

WHEN: Sat & Sun August 20-21 2016,   12 Noon to 6:00 PM 
WHERE: Oakland City Hall Plaza

Source: City of Oakland 2016



On July 12, 2016 the Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to end the assessment and collection on all fees charged to parents and guardians with children in the juvenile justice system.  The repeal, which is the first of its kind in the state, offers immediate relief to more than 2,900 families who pass through Alameda’s juvenile courts every year from future financial hardship, a $1.9 million debt in outstanding juvenile probation and public defender fees.       >>Read article here



The Alameda County Probation Department
Premiere of the 2015 Tolerance Tour documentary.
This is a formal red carpet event, light refreshments will be served.
Please click here for Important Notice and additional information

WHEN: Friday, July 15, 2016,  6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
WHERE: Oakland Asian Cultural Center – 388 9th Street #290, Oakland, CA 94607

Source: Alameda County Probation Department 2016

Boys and Men of Color Career Summit in Oakland 
July 12th – Berkeley Registration
July 14th and 15th 2016 – Oakland Registration

In this career summit, LeadersUp is conducting training labs preparing  young men (ages 18-29) for interviews and possible immediate placement in the local work force with companies like Noah’s Bagels, Starbucks, Hilton, Macy’s, and Palecek, among others.

Registration is open for our “Winning in the Workplace” training labs, which are required for access to pre-scheduled interviews.

Young adults also have the option to register for labs by texting “BMOC” to 95577
Contact: Devon Miner ( can answer any additional questions

Source: Alameda County Probation Department 2016


This event is a celebration about… A year of postivity, good vibes, beautiful people, community love, breaking stereotypes, supporting businesses, and showcasing what it really means to be SOOAKLAND.

” Where Young Professionals, Artist , Activist, Taste Makers, and the Fashion Conscious come to network, socialize, break stereotypes, party for a purpose, embrace community, and live life in a diverse environment exchanging positive energy amongst beautiful people. Changing the perception of our city one event at a time”

For invite and additional information , go to

When: Saturday, July 30th  1pm
Where:  Oakland Ca