The last two years have seen a 47% increase in homelessness in Oakland. Over 70% of the people living on the streets are African American. This is not just a crucial racial and economic justice issue, but a public health issue as well. Although Kehilla member Talya Husbands- Hankin has been addressing this issue, there has not been a formal Kehilla committee to support this important work.
Based on the identification of this need, the Economic Justice Committee welcomes a new subcommittee, Homeless Action. Talya Husbands-Hankin and Sue Greenwald, long-term Kehilla members, will chair this new subcommittee. Under their leadership and in collaboration with the Economic Justice Committee, the Homeless Action Subcommittee will:
- Address policy and advocacy issues for our homeless community members including meeting with the Homeless Advocacy Working Group and continuing to engage the Oakland City Council in improved policies.
- Expand the direct support provided to homeless encampments including potential cooking of meals, collecting needed donations etc.
- Support major events such as the recent Moms4Housing action at an unoccupied home in west Oakland. Be a witness when the Oakland Police Department closes encampments.
We are excited to form this intergenerational committee at Kehilla to address such a pressing issue in our community. If you have interest, time and energy to help us make a difference in homelessness in Oakland please come to our meeting on Tuesday, April 7, 5:30-6:30pm, online.