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Youth Leadership and Development (YLD)
YLD is a program geared towards generating training and civic engagement opportunities for youth including the Youth Advisory Commission which is a group of 25 young people ages 13 to 21 who are appointed by the Mayor and City Council to advise City officials about youth issues and ensure youth representation in Oakland. YLD along with the Youth Commission empower youth to enter the public arena and make a contribution to the City of Oakland.
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What Do Youth Commissioners Do?
To join the Youth Commission or get more information, contact:
Youth Leadership & Development
Youth Commission's Report on Effective Policing
There has been a lot of momentum recently galvanized by events happening around law enforcement and the community in Oakland and throughout the nation. As a result, in the past few months, many Oakland leaders and community members have held hearings, town halls/forums and community meetings around the issue of police and community relations, but there has been one thing noticeably missing from these conversations and that has been the voice of the youth. This is an attempt by the Oakland Youth Commission and Youth Leadership Advocate, Brooklyn Williams, to include that voice and to document what we believe is the most important voice and element in all of this. Young people in Oakland come in overwhelming contact with law enforcement; therefore, they should be heard by the policy and decisions makers in this city. On February 11, 2015, about 75 young people representing 15 diverse youth agencies came together at City Hall to come up with solutions and recommendations for accountable policing in an effort to improve the relationship between law enforcement, the community and young people in Oakland. While we know and acknowledge that there have been significant reforms already happening within the Oakland Police Department (OPD), we would like to offer the following recommendations as our contribution to this process and to the building of a better city. The various youth groups were asked to come with ideas already flushed out and ready to present through their respective programs or groups.
The youth of Oakland were clear, they wanted to meet with officers and build relationships and trust with them. They want them trained and they want them to see the residents of Oakland as “human beings, to see their humanity,” and they want for each to show the other human kindness. Recently, City of Oakland Police Chief Sean Whent met with many of the youth who drafted the recommendations. They are continuing to meet and dialogue with OPD to discuss the recommendations more in depth and to come up with viable and tangible policy solutions. They will go back in front of City Council’s Public Safety Committee to give a status report on the recommendations.
We know that OPD, the decision makers, elected officials and city leaders are working toward a new path forward and we want to ensure that as they are implementing their plans, they are listening to young people, and young people are at the table during the process. We hope that City leaders keep the information presented in this document at the forefront of their minds as they are coming up with policy reforms, creating strategies, funding programs, legislating and addressing the root causes of crime and poverty in the City. The Mayor, City Council, the City Administrator’s Office, City department heads, and OPD should focus on root causes and invest in prevention and intervention strategies. The City needs to combat crime by coupling affective policing with addressing the economic and social conditions that cause and breed crime and poverty because we all know they are all closely correlated.
Read the article here.
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