News From Our Partners

Oakland Residents Say Tent Encampments Threatening Neighborhoods

By Devin Katayama, KQED News Fix

When Hilary Nevis bought her house last year on 29th Street in Oakland’s Hoover-Foster neighborhood, she remembers a single person sleeping under the freeway overpass a few dozen yards from her front door.

“It was a really small footprint. He didn’t bother anyone. He very much felt like my neighbor,” Nevis said.

Read the complete story at KQED News Fix.

For more information about homelessness, read the Summer 2017 San Francisco Public Press Special Report "Navigating Homelessness."

Spurred by Deaths, Legislature Advances Idea of Legal Spots to Inject Illegal Drugs

By Laurel Rosenhall, CALmatters

Many California communities could open centers inviting addicts to shoot up hard drugs under a little-noticed bill that has cleared the state Assembly and now awaits a vote on the Senate floor. The goal is to reduce deaths.

Here’s how the concept — modeled after a supervised drug injection facility in Vancouver, Canada — works: A user walks into a government-run clinic with some heroin in his pocket. He’s greeted by a nurse who directs him to wash his hands before offering an array of clean needles. He sits down at a sterile booth, rolls up a sleeve and shoots up. As the high sinks in, he makes his way to a chill-out room for a cup of coffee or juice. There, staff watch for signs of overdose, prepared to administer life-saving medication if needed.

Read the complete story at CALmatters.

‘You Don’t Just Quit’: California Hits Back at Trump’s Transgender Military Ban

By Miranda Leitsinger, KQED News Fix

President Donald Trump’s announcement early Wednesday that transgender people would no longer be allowed to serve was met with swift reaction and strong opposition among California’s transgender military community and congressional delegation.

Trump made the announcement in a series of tweets, concluding with: “Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming…victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.”

Read the complete story at KQED News Fix.

 

California’s Gender Pay Gap: How 2 Proposed Laws Aim to Close It

By Ben Christopher, CALmatters

California boasts some of the toughest “fair pay” laws in the country — yet the average full-time working woman has been earning only 86 cents for every dollar earned by a man. A recent study concluded that gap won’t close before the year 2043.

Two female lawmakers don’t intend to wait that long.

The Legislature, which in the past two years has approved a series of bills aimed at gender pay equity for substantially similar work, is considering going even further this session. The first proposal would bar a prospective employer from asking a job applicant about prior salary; the second would require large employers to publicly disclose the median earnings of salaried employees and board members, by gender.

Read the complete story at CALmatters.

This Army Base Once Drove West Oakland’s Economy. Now It Drives Discrimination.

By Emma Foehringer Merchant, Grist 

A veil of dust covers the windowsills of Ray Kidd’s home. Outside, in his backyard, particles coat a lemon tree, sticking to the fruit’s pimpled, yellow skin.

“Diesel pollution,” says the 72-year-old Kidd, who has lived in West Oakland since 1973. “It’s just pervasive.” Across town, close to Lake Merritt — a more affluent part of the city — his mother’s backyard lemon tree grows untarnished.

West Oakland sits directly across the water from San Francisco, putting it effectively in the center of the Bay Area. It’s bounded on all sides by freeways — the 880, 980, and 580 — and hugs the Port of Oakland. The bustling docks hold the distinction of being the city’s economic heartbeat, and its worst enemy.

Read the complete story at Grist.

Mobile Classroom Brings Education to the Hardest-to-Reach Students

By Carolyn Jones, EdSource

Tiaira Breaux spent much of her childhood in foster care, served time in the juvenile justice system and had to fight for sole custody of her three sons. But nothing, she said, nothing was tougher than learning high school algebra.

“I could not do it. My mind could just not process it. I was so irritated, I tried to quit,” said the 26-year-old Oakland resident. “Learning how to graph slopes was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life.”

Read the complete story at EdSource.

Diverse Cops Make the Difference in Policing Hate

By Jenny ManriqueNew America Media

Hate crimes are on the rise nationwide, including in San Francisco, where the city’s diversity also happens to be a hallmark of the San Francisco Police Department’s Hate Crimes Unit.

It’s one of just a handful of such units across the country, and officials say its diversity is a key part of its mission.

Read the complete story at New America Media.

 

Latest California Innovation: A Republican Case for Cap and Trade

By Laurel Rosenhall, CALmatters

Minutes after a bipartisan coalition of California lawmakers voted to extend the state’s landmark climate-change policy for another decade, Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown stood in front of a bank of television cameras and compared the plan to one championed 30 years ago by GOP icon Ronald Reagan.

Back then, the Republican president helped negotiate the Montreal protocol to curb the release of gases that were destroying the ozone layer, persuading Republicans to join Democrats in approving “an insurance policy” that made economic sense in case environmentalists were right. Brown said the California cap-and-trade program the Legislature approved Monday night won support for a similar reason.

Read the complete story at CALmatters.

For more information about  California’s cap-and-trade program, read the San Francisco Public Press (in collaboration with Earth Island Journal and Bay Nature magazine) special report on climate change.

Should We Still Be Worried About Radioactive Waste on Treasure Island?

By Angela Johnston, KALW/Crosscurrents

If you drive east on the Bay Bridge out of San Francisco and look down at Treasure Island, it’s hard to miss what look like enormous piles of dirt. These mounds are actually the remains of old Navy barracks, ground into pieces.

Now, they signify some of the first visible steps in the long-talked-about Treasure Island redevelopment. About a year ago, the city of San Francisco broke ground on the project that includes a ferry terminal, shops, restaurants and 8,000 homes. It’s a big deal for a housing-strapped city. KALW listener Jan Burnham heard about the development and thought about the island's past. The former Navy base there had notorious problems with its cleanup of radioactive materials.

Read the complete story at KALW/Crosscurrents.

For more information on Treasure Island issues, read the Fall 2010 San Francisco Public Press Special Report on Treasure Island

California Lawmakers Move to Protect Undocumented Workers

By Elena ShoreNew America Media

If immigration agents show up at a worksite, employers don’t have to let them in.

That is one of the key messages immigrant rights advocates are sending out as a new bill that would increase protections for workers makes its way through committees in the California Legislature.

Employers across the country already have certain rights, said Grisel Ruiz, staff attorney of the Immigrant Legal Resource Center. “If an employer has [U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement] agents coming to their workplace, so long as the workplace is private property, they should also keep ICE agents out…unless they have an ICE warrant,” she said.

Read the complete story at New America Media.