A white woman called police on black people barbecuing. This is how the community responded

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Hundreds danced to hip-hop and ’80s soul music Sunday and listened to local African-American candidates make their pitches. But this cookout in Oakland, California, wasn’t just any spring festival.

The event, dubbed “BBQing While Black,” was one community’s powerful response to what many perceived as yet another example of everyday racism.

It all started on April 29, when a white woman reportedly called police on a few black people who, she said, were using a charcoal grill in an area where it was banned, according to CNN affiliate KRON. Oakland police arrived; no one was arrested. But the 25-minute episode was captured on video, then posted to YouTube and viewed more than 2 million times.

More from…apple.news/AvhWRTcF8SsWNodlDWYbTPQ

 

Posted by Libergirl

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Oakland agrees to pay $1.17M to settle Occupy suit

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pepper spray students

Image: Wayne Tilcock, AP

The Oakland City Council has agreed to pay more than $1 million to settle a lawsuit filed by a dozen Occupy Oakland protesters who said they were the victims of excessive force during clashes with police in 2011.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports the $1.17 million payout follows criticism by outside experts who said the Oakland Police Department was understaffed and not prepared to deal with the demonstrations.

The agreement requires police to adhere to their crowd-control policies.

Plaintiffs Suzi Spangenberg and Sukay Sow say they were injured by flash-bang grenades thrown by officers. Spangenberg will get $500,000. Sow says she suffered a second-degree chemical burn on her foot during the clash at a City Hall camp and will get $210,000.

AP via USA Today

Posted by Libergirl

Oakland schools to let feds monitor discipline of black students

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The Oakland Unified School District and the U.S. Department of Education reached an agreement last week that would allow federal officials to monitor the district’s efforts to curb the number of out-of-school suspensions of its African American students.

The resolution, which the Oakland school board passed unanimously, closes an investigation by the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights into whether African American students were disciplined more frequently and harshly than their white classmates. The agreement was reached Thursday.

Last school year, African American students made up about 39% of the district’s total enrollment but accounted for 63% of students with at least one suspension and 61% of those who were expelled, said Russlynn Ali, the department’s assistant secretary for civil rights.

That disparity and the practices that led to them are found across the country, Ali said. “They are not unique to Oakland,” she said.

The district plans to try to address disciplinary issues without suspensions, revise discipline policies, provide services for students at risk of dropping out and provide training for teachers and staff, she said.

Under the agreement, the department can continue to oversee the district until it deems that it has fulfilled its obligations, particularly finding ways of disciplining students that do not involve suspension.

The agreement will make sure the district works “to change the culture in schools and classrooms that too often gives rise to extraordinary rates of discipline,” Ali said.

By Stephen Ceasar/Los Angeles Times

Posted by The NON-Conformist

Oakland protesters call on Obama to freeze pot clinic crackdowns

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Image: Oakland Tribune

Hundreds of medical marijuana patients and advocates rallied Monday in Oakland, Calif., in advance of an evening fundraiser by President Obama, calling on him to freeze federal crackdowns on cannabis dispensaries until he clarifies his administration’s policies on operations that are following state and local laws.

The rally came two weeks after a federal forfeiture action against the Oakland-based Harborside Health Center, the nation’s largest medical marijuana dispensary and one that has won acclaim as a model for the industry. In April, federal agents raided several Oakland businesses operated by prominent marijuana activist Richard Lee, forcing his dispensary — which, like Harborside, was permitted, taxed and backed by local officials — to close.

More from Lee Romney, Los Angeles Times

Posted by Libergirl

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