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Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao meets with community amid crime, public safety concerns

At McClymonds High School on Saturday, Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao gathered with people, ready to walk the streets and get neighbors to share their ideas and opinions through surveys.

The “talking transitions” program aims to get residents to respond to a survey on ways to improve and shape Oakland moving forward. It also comes as the city is dealing with increasing crime and public safety concerns.

Jerry Law is part of the effort, and young people are being paid to help. He spoke about the event Saturday.

“The community that’s the voiceless, that get overlooked, over talked over ran, whatever, this is the time to shine,” he said. “It’s a city wide engagement initiative, this program is designed for the voiceless.”

The survey covers issues like housing, economic opportunity and community safety.

The mayor says the information collected from the online survey will shape the mandate as her administration moves forward. But some residents say their concerns around crime and other issues feel more urgent.

“We can’t go out our door without peeking looking around the corner, looking around our property to make sure nobody is there,” Oakland resident Deborah said.

Early Saturday morning, there was at least one deadly shooting and other person injured by gunfire. On Friday, several burglaries were reported including at a convenience store and a restaurant.

Thao says the crime problems didn’t happen overnight and have snowballed over the years.

“So under the eight months that my administration has been in office, we have brought back the foot patrol officers into the business corridors, we have brought back a traffic unit,” she said.

Thao also pointed to securing CHP officers to help with traffic and securing money to fund hundreds of cameras city wide. Thao is hosting a similar event next Saturday at Castlemont High School.

Source: NBC Bay Area

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