Oakland’s Young People Respond [VIDEO]

By Guest Columnist Apr 02, 2009

by Nick James, Charles McDonald This past November Oakland voters approved a measure that would increase funding to after school programs and services, overwhelmingly supporting youth of color. Unfortunately, after the election some members of the council passed a resolution to repeal the mandate of the electorate, claiming the tough economic times would be forcing the city to scale back and make sacrifices to much needed successful programming and services directed towards Oakland youth. The interviews above were shot an Oakland City Council meeting on Measure OO. These are the stories of people living, working, and attending school in Oakland. Theses are their thoughts regarding recent tragedy that rocked a community, and their hopes and vision for the future. They are not naive to the deep rooted issues that Oaklander’s face everyday, but through their commitment to the principles of justice, equity, and democracy they learn how to heal, build, and sustain community for tomorrow’s leaders. They also demand our city officials have the will to go to any measures to ensure adequate economic investment in the development of Oakland families, children, and youth. Nick James is Director of Special Projects for the East Bay nonprofit Youth Together. He was born, raised, and currently living in Oakland. Charles McDonald is the Statewide Alliance Organizer for the Education and Racial Justice nonprofit, Californians for Justice. He lives in Oakland, California.