Tag Archives: 100 block initiative

Commit A Crime, Get A (Summer) Job

Mayor Jean Quan announces jobs for youth at press conference at McClymonds

by Whitney Layne

The Mayor came. The Mayor promised jobs, but she didn’t hire me- she is hiring convicts.

A couple weeks ago, Mayor Jean Quan and representatives from city departments came to McClymonds to hire students for the summer jobs. It was a Wednesday, so students got out early.

A man named Bill told people to fill out their information on a sheet of paper and then to speak to different people. Students stayed who really wanted the job stayed, but mostly everyone left. It was a good opportunity for most students because they came to hire people on the spot.

They had different people or jobs depending where you live or how far you can travel. So that was also a good opportunity. What I didn’t like was that they were giving students the run around after they filled out every paper.

As I saw it,  there weren’t enough opportunities and they were also supposed to be hiring on the spot, but they didn’t.

It gets worse: after they asked you your name, they asked you whether you were on probation.

To me that was so rude, very silly, considering that they came to us to apply for their summer job at our school. I never even had a run in with the police. It’s also discrimination: I can’t get a job because I basically don’t have a criminal record! They should have had a side for people on probation and a side for people who are not on probation.

Basically they were racial profiling because we are an all black school. Everyone who goes to McClymonds is not on probation, and they should not base summer jobs on whether you are a criminal or not.

It’s very uneducated to approach a person and say “Hi I am Whitney, I am a felon on probation, and I would like to apply for a job with your company.”

Mayor Quan Kicks Off Summer Jobs Fair at Mack

by Stephen Vance

Her dream was to fight fires and save lives.

Daileesha McDonald got a step closer to that dream Wednesday when Mayor Jean Quan brought a summer jobs fair to McClymonds High School in West Oakland. “How exciting to find out that a summer job was available in the fire department,” said McDonald, a 9th grader at Mack.

Oakland Mayor Jean Quan held a press conference at McClymonds to launch a summer jobs program for youths that complements her 100 block initiative, a program that focuses services and enforcement  on the 100 blocks in Oakland, to reduce crime in the 5 percent of the city where more than 90 percent of the shootings and homicides take place. She introduced staff members and McClymonds principal Kevin Taylor.

About 75 students picked up forms and chatted with representatives from Oakland’s fire, police, public works, and parks and recreation departments. Some were from Bunche, Oakland High and Oakland Tech. The city will hold a similar fair at Lockwood Gardens tomorrow and at Willie Wilkins Park on Saturday. 

“It’s so much easier for me to apply for a summer job right here at school,” said Desire Combs, an 11th grader.

Mayor Quan  told the press that she wanted to reach youths at every level, whether they want to “build a skyscraper or get a doctorate.”

When she walked around the Lower Bottoms, said Mayor Quan, she met a teenager who told her, “If I had a job, I wouldn’t be selling on this corner.”

Her goal is to create 1,000 jobs for youth, most paying a stipend. The city’s parks and recreation department alone is planning to hire more than 200 youths for the summer.