Oakland Urged to Declare State of Emergency Over Escalating Crime Rate, NAACP Calls for Immediate Action

The local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Acts Full Gospel Church have jointly issued a call to the city of Oakland to declare a state of emergency due to the escalating crime rate, asserting that the safety of residents is at stake. 

In a letter released on July 27, Oakland NAACP President Cynthia Adams and Bishop Bob Jackson of Acts Full Gospel Church blamed various factors, including the district attorney’s office and the movement to defund the police, for contributing to a surge in criminal activities, creating a “heyday for Oakland criminals.”

Highlighting the severity of the situation, the organizations emphasized that the city is currently facing a critical shortage of 500 police officers, rendering the 911 system ineffective and residents helpless in times of danger. Criminals, they added, are emboldened by the lack of consequences for their actions, leading to a continuous surge in criminal activities.

The call for action extends beyond just increasing police presence. While advocating for more police, Adams emphasized the need for additional job opportunities in Oakland to engage the youth and help steer them away from crime. She pointed out that the loss of three major ports in the city has adversely affected employment opportunities, contributing to the rising crime rates.

“We talk about love and unity. We need more jobs in Oakland, so our young people can be able to work,” Adams said. “We have lost three major ports where people could always depend on jobs.”

The crime situation in Oakland is undeniably concerning. As of June 25, 2023, the city had already recorded 3,370 violent crimes, marking an alarming 11% increase from the previous year. It gets worse, statistics from the week ending July 23 show an increase of 26% from the previous year.

There have been 52 homicides in just the first seven months of 2023, equaling the total number reported in the entire year of 2022, though still fewer than in 2021. Instances of rape and robbery have also seen significant rises compared to the previous year, according to data from the Oakland Police Department.

The city’s response to crimes has been hampered by lengthy wait times for emergency services. Victims reporting crimes, even violent ones, face prolonged wait times to connect with dispatchers and for police to arrive at the scene. This has led to a decrease in crime reporting, further complicating efforts to tackle the issue effectively.

Information for this story was found via Twitter, Newsweek, and the sources and companies mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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