News Coverage

Alameda County agrees to allocate more realignment funds to community-based organizations

San Jose Mercury News
by Malaika Fraley
Mar 24, 2015


Alameda County will approximately double the money it spends on programs helping people coming out of jail and prison under a plan approved by supervisors Tuesday.

A Push for Alameda County to Fund Re-entry Programs

Oakland Post
by Ashley Chambers
Mar 16, 2015


Alameda County and other California counties have begun receiving millions of dollars a year to partially offset the state decision to save money by shifting many inmates from state prisons to local jails.

The Urban Strategies Council and a number of other organizations, including the Ella Baker Center through its Jobs Not Jails campaign, are challenging how funds are divvied up saying not enough public safety funds in Alameda County go to support individuals reentering society from prison.

Protesters Disrupt Board of Supervisors Meeting, Demanding Services for Formerly Incarcerated

Oakland Post
by Ashley Chambers
Mar 05, 2015


After months of rallying the community in the Jobs Not Jails campaign, organizers with the Ella Baker Center in Oakland and nearly 100 community members peacefully disrupted the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, March 3.

Activists conduct peaceful disobedience to aid formerly incarcerated

People's World
by Marilyn Bechtel
Mar 05, 2015


OAKLAND, Calif. - Tired of waiting after months of discussions with the Alameda County Board of Supervisors, advocates of greater county spending to help formerly incarcerated people staged a peaceful disruption of the supervisors' Mar. 3 meeting to press their demands.

The Crime of Punishment

The Chronicle of Social Change
by Kristin Herbert
Mar 04, 2015


Senate Bill 124, introduced this spring by Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), seeks to define and limit solitary confinement at state and county juvenile facilities in California, in keeping with efforts in several other states to curb its overuse and abuse.

Co-sponsored by the Children’s Defense Fund—California along with Youth Justice Coalition, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, and the California Public Defenders Association, SB124 aims to reform current use of solitary confinement.

Activists shut down Alameda County supervisors meeting over realignment spending

San Jose Mercury News
by Malaika Fraley
Mar 03, 2015


Activists calling for increased public safety monies for community-based programs serving the formerly incarcerated on Tuesday shut down an Alameda County Board of Supervisors meeting, where Supervisor Keith Carson in response announced a proposal that would double the amount spent on such programs in fiscal year 2015-2016.

Discontinuing Solitary Confinement in Juvenile Facilities

The Chronicle of Social Change
by Erica Webster
Mar 03, 2015


A new California bill (SB 124) introduced by California Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) in January 2015, and co-sponsored by the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, seeks to forbid the use of solitary confinement as punishment in juvenile facilities. 


Legislation seeks to end isolation in juvenile facilities

San Diego CityBeat
by Kelly Davis
Feb 04, 2015


Last month, state Sen. Mark Leno introduced SB 124, legislation that would define solitary confinement in state and county juvenile-corrections facilities and establish standards for how it’s used.

Jennifer Kim, policy director at the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights in Oakland, helped write the legislation and says that nailing down the definition of what constitutes solitary confinement was an important component of the bill.

Against Mugshots: Photos of the State's Latest Catch Don't Belong in a Free Press

by Charles Davis
Feb 04, 2015


"I believe that there is a way to strike a balance between public interest in information while really respecting folks' rights as individuals who have not yet been convicted of anything," said Zachary Norris, executive director of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, which seeks to reduce the threat of incarceration facing communities of color. 

County to Spend More Money on Jails, Not Services

East Bay Express
by Sam Levin
Jan 28, 2015


Alameda County continues to invest heavily in jail cells while failing to put public safety funds toward critical social services for the formerly incarcerated.


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