Critical Resistance’s longest standing chapter, CR Oakland currently has three external workgroups operating campaigns and projects in the areas of Anti-Policing, Anti-Imprisonment, and “Inside-Outside” correspondence work with imprisoned people. Additionally, CR Oakland supports community building efforts through the organization’s building project, “Building People Power” at our building and lot at 4400 Telegraph in North Oakland, CA.
Critical Resistance Oakland
PO Box 22780
Oakland, CA 94609-2301
Critical Resistance Oakland
2929 Summit Street, #207
Oakland, CA 94609
CR Oakland Campaigns & Projects
Our anti-policing work has included efforts to stop Operation Impact, resist and ultimately end gang injunctions with Stop the Injunctions Coalition (STIC), defund the largest weapons and policing training expo in the world – Urban Shield -, and create community resources for abolition and movement building, like the Oakland Power Projects (OPP), an initiative to engage Oakland residents in building community power and wellbeing without relying on cops. Most recently, CR Oakland’s anti-policing workgroup organized on a campaign to defund the Oakland police department with Defund OPD Coalition and Anti-Police Terror Project (APTP).
Our anti-imprisonment stems from the anti-expansion organizing Critical Resistance did in the early 2000’s to halt California’s 20-year prison boom. Continuing to anchor the statewide alliance Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB) for years, CR Oakland supported CURB’s work to resist AB900 and different expansion efforts during a period of California’s prison history called “realignment”, during which time the chapter began to organize against jailing in the Bay Area. Unable to stop a jail expansion project in San Mateo County with CURB, CR Oakland was able to successfully defeat several different plans for jail expansion in San Francisco County with No New SF Jail Coalition, and is now supporting Decarcerate Alameda County to release prisoners from and close Santa Rita jail in Alameda County. Now joining forces with CR Los Angeles, CR Oakland’s anti-imprisonment workgroup is also working on CURB’s prison closure campaign.
Prisoner Correspondence & the “Inside-Outside” Workgroup:
CR Oakland’s Inside-Outside workgroup operates a monthly volunteer day to engage in correspondence with imprisoned people across the US (except East Coast states, Washington, and Oregon, which are covered by our sibling chapters CYNYC and CRPDX). Supporting and coordinating CR’s phone lines and national mail program, CR Oakland’s Inside-Outside workgroup plays a vital role in providing resources and political education materials to people imprisoned in jails, detention centers, and prisons nationally.
Before coordinating the chapter’s mail program, the Inside-Outside workgroup originated a few years ago as an Inside-Outside Reading Group that engaged imprisoned correspondents in the campaigns and projects of the chapter, uplifted and supported their analysis and perspectives on abolitionist struggle, and worked to build inside-outside relationships to connect prisoners with the organizations campaigns and projects. Read excerpts, writings and statements from prisoners shared in our mail program, phone lines, and reading group on CR’s “Prisoners Speak Out” page.
“Building People Power” – 4400 Telegraph Building Project:
From 2018, Critical Resistance and CR Oakland have been building a community space in North Oakland, one of the neighborhoods CR fought gang injunctions in through the Stop the Injunctions Coalition (STIC). A multi-year project, the building at 4400 will be a hub for abolitionist community in the Bay Area, centralizing the struggles and resilience of systems-impacted communities fighting gentrification in the North Oakland neighborhood. Once up and running, the building will also serve as CR’s main Oakland chapter and National headquarters. Learn more about Building People Power and the 4400 Telegraph Building project here.
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