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Oakland Measure S1: Accountability For Oakland Police

Thomas Hawk
Creative Commons, used under CC BY-NC 2.0
Oakland Police lined up in riot gear. (June 5, 2015)

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Oakland Measure S1 is a police reform effort for voters in Oakland. Those behind the measure see it as a path to independent oversight of the Oakland Police Department. They say it would increase accountability, community safety and public trust. 

S1 would amend Oakland’s City Charter to accomplish two things: First, it would create a new Office of Inspector General to review and report on the Police Department and police misconduct.  This new position would be hired and fired by the police commission. 

And second, Measure S1 would change the powers and duties of the Police Commission and the Community Police Review Agency. The measure would allow these bodies to hire their own attorneys independent of the Oakland City Attorney.  

The city estimates S1 would have an annual cost of around $316,000 — most of it would go toward staffing. The measure also proposes an audit every three years, which would cost up to $150,000 per audit.  Measure S1 requires 50% or more votes in order to pass.

All eight Oakland City Council members and the California Democratic Party back the measure.  

There are no official opponents listed for the measure.

Vote yes if you are in favor of giving more independence to the police commission and the community police review agency. And creating an independent Office of Inspector General to review police misconduct in Oakland. Vote no if you are opposed to having this new independent oversight.    

(he/him/his) I’m a second-generation Berkeley native. I feel lucky to have grown up in an area with a rich non-commercial and alternative radio scene. As a kid I hid a transistor radio below my pillow, exploring across the dial, long after bedtime. I got to work in radio production with KDVS at UC Davis while getting a degree in Wildlife Photography and Writing in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. Documentary film and television production was my main work after college. Volunteering with the Gay Men’s Health Collective of the Berkeley Free Clinic, deepened my interest in science and health advocacy, and drew me into work and further studies in public health. In addition to the Bay Area I have lived and worked in Washington, DC, Central America and Mexico. I’m currently involved helping free clinics across California and I’m a medical student educator in several Western states. I love hearing and sharing people’s stories and working to help make lives better. I’m very happy to be learning and practicing journalism and audio production with KALW.