Every night in Oakland more than 6,000 people sleep outside–on streets, in parks, under freeways and more. We’ve gotten used to this, but it is not acceptable. 70% of people who are homeless are Black – while they only represent 24% of our population. This is a humanitarian crisis. It is immoral, unjust and it must not continue.
Addressing homelessness will be my top priority as Mayor. I will tackle this challenge head-on. If elected, I will enforce the City of Oakland Encampment Management Policy. We have a plan in place that, with updates, will require us to provide increased shelter options, services and compassionate outreach to all unhoused people, including those in recreational vehicles and then will allow us to prohibit camping in parks and public spaces. I will collaborate with local, state and federal partners to create permanent pathways to housing and economic stability.
No Oaklander should be sleeping in streets, parks, cars or under freeways. We must prevent and end homelessness.
I will also immediately audit existing revenue streams designed to alleviate homelessness (Measure Q, Measure W, etc.) and make sure we are spending them as intended – in coalition with homeless individuals, advocates, commissioners and experts.
We will secure and properly target funding, refine and enforce current policies, and we will make a difference in the lives of all Oaklanders. Money and programs are significant challenges, but they are not the root of the homelessness crisis – the root problem is a lack of political will.