Melanie Cervantes
8.5″ x 11″ PDF download and 11″ x 17″ poster design, March 2011

Text from social media sharing on March 9, 2011:

We oppose gang injunctions because:

1. Gang injunctions do not work because they do not address the root causes of violence, such as poverty and unemployment. We need to support our youth by fully investing in education, health care, community centers, affordable housing and providing meaningful jobs.

2. The City of Oakland is proposing spending $430,000 on this gang injunction while education and other vital services are being dramatically cut. We can choose to spend half a million dollars on this gang injunction, or we can choose to put more money into education, youth and community centers, job creation, and affordable housing, all of which will prevent violence. How can this be a priority while people are losing their homes and jobs, and schools are closing right and left?

3. Gang injunctions rely on racial profiling, and strip people of their civil rights. If granted, it would give the Oakland Police Department wide discretion to label people gang members without having to present any evidence to a judge or even charge them with a crime. The individuals impacted would not be provided with an attorney or given the opportunity to defend themselves.

4. We believe this gang injunction is being used to push poor and working class people of color out of North Oakland. We need to ask, why this neighborhood, why more police, and why now? North Oakland is being targeted for gentrification, and this measure will contribute to rapidly rising real estate prices and upscale development that will make housing unaffordable for people who have been living in North Oakland for decades. (* There are also proposed gang injunctions int the Fruitvale neighborhood of Oakland)