ORGANIZING FOR POWER 2016 EAST BAY CANDIDATE & VOTER EDUCATION FORUM Free and open to the public
(Oakland, CA - October 3, 2016) - It's an important time for the country as we get ready to head to the polls on November 8th to elect the next president of the United States. The stark contrast between the Democratic and Republican presidential candidates have dominated the national political scene. But just as important are the local races and measures that will directly affect the daily life of East Bay residents.
With that in mind, Black Women Organized for Political Action, Black Elected Officials of the East Bay, Bayard Rustin LGBT Coalition, Niagara Movement Democratic Club and other East Bay organizations will host "Organizing for Power," a candidates and education forum on Monday, Oct. 3, at 5:30 p.m. at Geoffrey's Inner Circle, 410 14th Street, Oakland. Doors open at 5pm. Local candidates representing state, city, regional districts have been invited to participate. Representatives from local measures will share their perspectives and have campaign literature to take home.
"The candidate and voter education forum is designed to equip community members with the resources and tools they need to share with their constituencies. There will is a laser focus on the October 24th voter registration deadline and strategies to get residents to the polls to vote on November 8th," shares LaNiece Jones, BWOPA/TILE and organizing partner.
Members of the African-American community are urged to attend the free educational forum. Here are the Top 3 reasons why the 2016 local elections are important to the black community:
1. Local races have an immediate and lasting impact on the quality of life for residents. Laws that elected officials propose and pass can have a direct impact on local issues from housing displacement and gentrification, to police misconduct, jobs and mass incarceration. Therefore, it is important that residents elect candidates who share the same goals and concerns about their communities.
2. The collective African-American voting bloc is a force to be reckoned with. According to statistics from the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research at Cornell University, African-Americans represented the largest minority group to vote for Barack Obama (95 percent of all black voters) in the 2008 presidential election. In 2012, 93 percent of African-American voters supported Obama in his re-election bid. When African-Americans show up at the voting polls, we carry a lot of power.
3. African-Americans have a voting legacy to uphold. Our ancestors fought and died for our right to vote. Our generation must not allow their sacrifices in blood, sweat and tears to go in vain. We must continue to build on that foundation to achieve greatness in every aspect of our community. If we believe that black lives truly matter, we must come together and educate ourselves to ensure that we elect individuals who will support and fight for our vision for successful communities.
Additional organizing partners include AKA's, Bay Area Black Young Democrats, Delta's, The East Oakland Collective, Oakland Votes and Oakland Next Political Landscape.
"The forum content will help give us the intel to make informed decisions," stated Candice Elder, founder of The East Oakland Collective, whose members will be attending the forum.