Occupy Oakland Calls on its Activists to Occupy the Bulb

Occupy Oakland's bullet-shaped masthead
Occupy Oakland's bullet-shaped masthead
As of 11:45 a.m. today (Monday, December 9, 2013), the Occupy Oakland Twitter network is lighting up with messages that a camp on the Bulb is being removed. 

OO itself has while tweeted "#DefendTheBulb is here to blockade the dump trucks despite police".   Share the Bulb says "attorneys on scene."

Let's hope that if attorneys really are on scene, they will encourage their clients to follow the direction of law enforcement, and keep things calm.    

And let's hope that some campers come to see that a shelter with heat and light, hot food, showers, kennels, and enclosed toilets, is not such a terrible thing to be offered at this time of year. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Kathryn Javandel December 09, 2013 at 04:43 PM
I recall a city council meeting where the police spokesperson said that part of the plan included abandoned camps being removed and the belongings stored for a certain amount of time (90 days? 120 days? I can't remember) before being discarded. It wouldn't surprise me if some of the campers, especially the ones who came since last spring, were really suffering in the freezing temperatures of the last few nights and so they abandoned their camps either for the Albany shelters or other heated abodes. On the other hand, it also wouldn't surprise me if the first sector of camps are being removed without fanfare on the part of the police. Basically a repeat of the Occupiers and their stuff being forcibly removed from the Gill tract. I hope the rabble-rousers don't actually convince the illegal campers to physically attack or interfere with the police or other city workers. That would not end well for the illegal campers.
Rochelle Nason December 09, 2013 at 05:13 PM
The City of Albany has tweeted that it is just cleaning up abandoned campsites. The City's press release is here: http://www.albanyca.org/index.aspx?page=18&recordid=2544&returnURL=%2findex.aspx The Indybay article, which stimulated the Occupy Oakland callout and the City's response, is here: https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2013/12/09/18747507.php
Rochelle Nason December 09, 2013 at 05:26 PM
The only Twitter user who responded in the affirmative to the Occupy Oakland call to action was a fellow who wanted to know "Can I ride my bike to the Albany Bulb or is it hella far from oakland? I wanna go support." Another Occupy member gave him directions for getting to Albany by bus, for which he was most grateful. This would be funny, if it weren't so sad. The campers have blown off six months of search time, and at least $60,000 of Albany's public funds, and as a consequence they now face a much narrower range of options than they might have been able to secure over the summer. What a tragic waste.
christopher papazoglow December 09, 2013 at 05:47 PM
"Doris has two cats. Berkeley Food and Housing Project insisted on moving her in with a couple who has a dog with a high prey drive. She hasn't moved her stuff even though it's packed, and she hasn't moved her cats, because they'll get killed." She was given 15 minutes to leave, this morning, and her camp "removed", because she's now classified as "living indoors" and thus hers is an "abandoned camp."
Rochelle Nason December 09, 2013 at 05:56 PM
christopher, has Doris considered seeking a fostering situation for her cats, so she can be reunited with them if and when she secures housing that allows her to keep cats? Maybe there is a cat person in the congregation of the Solano Community Church, who would be her 'buddy' and take in her cats for her until she can take care of them herself, or maybe the Paw Fund can find someone?
christopher papazoglow December 09, 2013 at 06:10 PM
I don't know, Rochelle, since i've had no personal contact with Doris for several months. I only received the above info this morning, and wasn't aware of her situation prior to this. You offer some very good suggestions, and i appreciate that, and will forward them . Thank you.
downerave December 09, 2013 at 08:15 PM
Christopher, from whom did you receive the information you are forwarding? I saw this on someone's facebook page. I can't attest to its accuracy, but here it is... >>Dear Albany Friends and Neighbors, The City of Albany’s Outreach & Engagement to homeless has resulted in housing three people from the Albany Bulb. This success is the result of ongoing efforts by the City's service provider Berkeley Food and Housing Project, as well as strong community support from the Solano Community Church and the Albany Community Foundation. Additionally, their two pets, a dog and a cat, were also able to relocate with them. The pets were fixed, vaccinated, and microchipped courtesy of The PAW FUND I am organizing and Albany Neighbors Helping Neighbors effort to fully furnish their new homes. Jo Ferlatte from the Berkeley Food and Housing Project is connecting me with his newly housed clients. Luis and Sharon and Doris just moved this week to Richmond but they need beds, furniture and appliances as well as most of the household items we take for granted as part of our daily life. I met Luis two years ago at a Waterfront Committee/Social and Economic Justice Commission Joint Subcommittee meeting that was held at the Cove at the Albany Waterfront. I am delighted that he and his partner Sharon are taking advantage of this opportunity to transition from a life at the Albany Bulb to hopefully better and healthier future. Let’s make this a shining example of how we care, not just through our government and social agency efforts, but as neighbors helping neighbors. I am organizing and Albany Neighbors Helping Neighbors effort to fully furnish their new homes. Like me you may have extra clean lightly used furniture and housewares that you would like to see utilized by those in need. Perhaps you are planning to purchase some new household item this holiday season and will have something you would have gladly given to your friends or family members in need that you will be willing to donate. I hope you will find this as satisfying, as I will, knowing that your donation will go to good use immediately. That someone who didn’t have a real bed and a warm place to sleep will have one now that you helped provide. Next week four additional people will be moving into place in West Oakland. These seven people will need two queen size beds and three double or twin size beds with bed linens and blankets. Bedroom furniture: Seven dressers, nightstands table lamps table lamps Bathroom accessories: towels large and small bath mats Living room furniture: couch chairs, floor lamps and coffee tables. Kitchen: 2 Kitchen tables, small kitchen appliances. Transportation: pickup truck and/or large van with or without driver to be used for transporting large items that won’t fit in a full-size car. Volunteers: to help pick up and deliver donations. I will also be posting this on my Facebook page. Please also consider sharing this email with others in your social network who would be grateful for the opportunity to participate in this effort. Here is my contact information. Francesco Papalia 809 Key Route Blvd., Albany, CA Home: 510-525-1165 Cell: 510-219-1165 francescop@aol.com<<
christopher papazoglow December 09, 2013 at 08:36 PM
Before i read your above comment, downerave.....i just saw a report on KTVU which seemed to indicate that Doris's has NOT been cleared out and removed yet, and that she's been given more time. I don't know whom to believe on this, but certainly take what i posted "at 5:47 PM" with a grain of salt.
downerave December 09, 2013 at 08:46 PM
Thanks, Christopher. I wondered if there might be two different bulb residents named Doris when I read what you wrote and what I saw earlier today. By the way, I got that info from the Dogs of the Albany Bulb Facebook group. It was a comment in response to someone asking how they can help the residents.
christopher papazoglow December 09, 2013 at 09:38 PM
Thanks, downerave. Perhaps you could suggest to Dogs of the Albany Bulbthat they reprint such to Albany Patch, as a blog post or some such? For some reason, all i get is that it's a "closed group", and can view a partial list of members, but am not able to access the page to view the post, or send them a message. I think it's great that they're reaching out to their own Facebook community, but i don't think it should stop there, do you? (rhetorical question)
christopher papazoglow December 09, 2013 at 10:04 PM
downerave, in answer to your first question "at 8:15 PM". It was from a Facebook post to my timeline, and comment below the post, from Share the Bulb.
Rochelle Nason December 09, 2013 at 10:04 PM
christopher, what downerave posted was an e-mail from Francesco Papalia, who sits on Albany's waterfront committee, to selected contacts on his e-mail list. The Dogs of the Albany Bulb posted it on its private Facebook page to get the word out to its membership. downerave posted it publicly here to increase the circulation further. A big shoutout is due to Francesco for taking this on. The Albany Community Foundation also has been doing fundraising around this for several months (http://albanycommunityfoundation.org/). And of course, donations can be made directly to Berkeley Food & Housing, too (http://bfhp.org/).
Brian Parker December 09, 2013 at 10:28 PM
Hi Everyone- If you could make a practice of hitting the recommend button on the article/posting I believe it will give these waterfront related postings more visibility in the Patch rating system. Go up to the top page below the article title and much like the recommend on the comments let's see if we can get more focus on this issue. RECOMMEND, RECOMMEND, RECOMMEND I think it's important to support the City in this effort and this is one small way to show our support. Thank you
Rochelle Nason December 09, 2013 at 11:51 PM
I feel a little silly recommending my own blog, but have done so, Brian. My feeling is that people don't want to focus on this issue because they just want it to be over. But the campers (and their lawyers and advocates, not to mention the Occupiers and anarchists) have a LOT more delaying tactics to play out. So even if it is all getting very tedious, those who want the homeless to be housed, and the park returned to the the people, need to keep paying attention and speaking out for an end to this madness.
downerave December 10, 2013 at 12:31 AM
Thanks for answering my question, Christopher. And Rochelle is right, I am spreading the word here about a callout for helping those who are transitioning to get the items they need.
christopher papazoglow December 10, 2013 at 03:01 AM
Also, it informs us that there ARE folks out there who are serious about getting into housing, and that BFHP IS following through in getting some of them housed.
Mr Eous December 10, 2013 at 05:47 PM
Albany needs to do to the Bulb what UC did with the site of the Sprouts market: erect a fence across the neck so the police can control who comes and goes and keep the road clear for debris removal. No it can't stop everyone but it will prevent more people from bringing in more building materials. This is going to go on and on forever unless it is stopped and stopped quickly. Occupy has too much free time and not enough brains, and that's not a good combination.
Robert Cheasty December 13, 2013 at 02:57 PM
There have been many discussions about closing the Bulb with a variety of concerns raised. There was not clear will to take that step before and there is still a willingness to give the City room to implement its program of inviting the campers to leave with housing offers and of eventually enforcing no camping, no construction without a permit and no bringing materials to the closed dump site rules. But perhaps it is now time to revisit closing the Bulb as another tool in resolving the situation in light of continued and even escalated violations.


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