UPM youth members worked as part of the Revive Oakland Coalition’s Campaign for Quality Jobs with the redevelopment of the former Oakland Army Base (the coalition is led by EBASE and UPM was a member of the coalition’s Steering Committee).
As background, in summer 2012, our coalition won a landmark Community Jobs Agreement that governs the City of Oakland’s half of the redevelopment project. The Agreement includes local hire, living wage, protections against discrimination for formerly incarcerated job applicants, and the creation of a community based job center. UPM’s youth testified numerous times before City Council about the need for quality jobs and they organized a youth rally called “Swag’n For Justice,” attended by over 300 young people. UPM’s Executive Director served as Chief Spokesperson in negotiations with the City and the developers.
UPM’s participation in the Revive Oakland Coalition allowed youth to assert their voices into the development project. This is especially important because development often happens in a way that fails to consider the impact on young people.
With any new development in Oakland, it is important to pay attention to employment, housing, and environmental issues and how young adults are implicated. We believe that quality jobs equal more opportunities and less violence.