Niesha Lofing is managing editor of the Sacramento Valley Union Labor Bulletin, a nonprofit monthly publication of the Sacramento Central Labor Council and Sacramento-Sierra’s Building & Construction Trades Council. Lofing also serves as president of the Pacific Media Workers Guild, Local 39521, The Newspaper Guild-CWA.

Oakland Mayor Vows to Help Improve Relationship With Working Journalists

Oakland Mayor Jean Quan vowed to help improve the relationship between city police and journalists during a recent meeting with news gatherers and professional organizations. The meeting, held in late February at Oakland City Hall, was called in an effort to discuss incidents of working reporters and photographers being detained and in some cases arrested by Oakland Police Department officers during several Occupy Oakland protests in recent months.

Sara Steffens, a CWA District 9 staff representative, said the flaw lies not with the police department’s policy, but with its enforcement. “Our concern is that our members should be able to be out there working and not having to spend the night in jail,” Steffens said. “We don’t have a problem with the policy, but what’s happening in the heat of the moment.”

Solidarity: The Next Generation

group donned zombie gear, marched down to a music event at a city park and held a flash mob. Then they camped overnight in support of workers.

The group has about 50 active members, with 150 more involved via email. They hold at least three events a month not including activities like voter registration drives. They attend alliance events, hold happy hours and raise awareness around social justice issues.