Rampant Oakland Crime Prompts Companies to Take Extraordinary Safety Measures

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The news was bleak out of Oakland this week as residents and businesses are increasingly
falling victim to growing crime. Bay Area Council members Clorox, Blue Shield and Kaiser
Permanente were among companies cited in news reports as implementing various new safety
measures to protect their employees. Clorox is hiring security guards to escort workers from
their offices to transit and other locations, along with conducting safety training. Kaiser
recommended that its employees not go out for lunch at local businesses and Blue Shield is
providing ride-hailing services to get workers to the office.
According to a story in the San Francisco Chronicle this week, “the heightened precautions
follow a staggering 21% increase in violent crime last year, with robberies up 38% and
burglaries climbing 23% citywide, compared with 2022. For the second consecutive year,
Oakland logged 120 homicides.”
This is completely unacceptable, and the Council is committed to working with Oakland city and
police officials to rein in crime and improve public safety, one of our top public policy initiatives.
The Council is working with law enforcement officials in Oakland and around the Bay Area on a
regional recruitment campaign to address severe police staffing shortages that are hamstringing
departments in responding to crime. The Council is also convening a meeting of its members
next week to hear from them about their experiences and gather information that we will share
with Oakland officials. To engage in the Council’s crime and public safety work, please contact
Policy Director Laura Hill.

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