Occupy Oakland City Council is an autonomous action in solidarity with Occupy Oakland and Occupy Congress. The goal of this ongoing action is to encourage continuous civic engagement. We do not endorse a political party or politicians. Instead, our support goes to the most powerful representatives, the people. Occupy Oakland City Council begins at the January 17 meeting of Oakland City Council.
At the previous city council meeting, December 20, 2011, city council pushed for a resolution to “use whatever lawful tools we have, including enforcement of all state laws and local municipal code regulations and requirement to prevent future shutdown or disruptions of any port operation.” This type language is a direct threat to our first amendment right to assemble, which includes our right to join with organizations or groups without government interference. The resolution failed to garner enough council support as an “emergency solution.” This means the resolution can reappear on future City Council agendas.
While our local government is threatening our rights, Occupy Oakland City Council encourages individuals to exercise the rights endowed to them through the single most important document on democracy, The Constitution. We encourage others to stretch the boundaries of what city council expects from the citizens of Oakland by becoming engaged in the political process, by educating themselves and others and by effectively articulating their needs and concerns to city council. Both individually and collectively, we have the power to transform government.
Our responsibility to our community goes beyond showing up and voting. It also includes expressing our concerns, creatively finding solutions to problems and checking on our elected officials. We must ensure that our elected politicians hear the voice of the people and that the bureaucratic processes of government do not silence their voices.
Individuals may speak on any agenda item or they may freely speak on any issue that is of concern to them. Items to be discussed at the January 17 meeting include the adoption of a resolution to re-open the pressroom at City Hall and name it Sanjiv Handa City of Oakland Press Room, declare a local emergency due to AIDS, retirement benefits for Oakland safety members and a resolution allowing a five-minute window for parking violations
You may access the agenda on the Occupy Oakland City Hall website or through the City Council website. Occupy Oakland City Council encourages individuals to sign up to speak either during public comments or during specific agenda items.
Rally outside Oakland City Hall on January 17 at 4:30 p.m. Oakland City Council meetings begin at 5:30 p.m. People wanting to help organize, spread the word or speak at the rally should email email@example.com. You may also find information on Twitter: @oakcitycouncil or on the Occupy City Hall Facebook page.