This just in: The Skanner News has just received this press release from community activists planning to rally today to support protests against the police shooting of an unarmed man of color in Anaheim, as well as to draw attention to community development needs in East Multnomah County.
"6pm Rally & March Will Call for Police Accountability in Gresham, Portland & Anaheim California"
Gresham, OR – Fatigued by police shootings of unarmed people of color and the mentally ill in Portland, community activists spontaneously mobilized out of sympathy with the community of Anaheim, California, now afflicted by the police killing of unarmed Manual Diaz on 21 July. After a hundred racial, social and economic justice advocates assembled at Portland's North Precinct last Friday, today's action was planned to help bring solidarity among the area's Latino community. Activists will gather in the Plaza del Sol, outside the Gresham Police facility at 187th & Stark. They will then march to the site of a proposed police interrogation facility.
The Oregonian has made clear that Multnomah County has for many years used Federal funds to shunt people of color and low-income renters into communities like Rockwood … and away from areas richer in social services and cultural advantages.
"… residents who could most benefit from good schools, safe streets, abundant grocery stores, nearby parks and high-achieving role models are largely locked out of the neighborhoods that have them."
Instead of fostering markets and commercial activity, the Gresham Redevelopment Commission (GRC) has placed as its highest priority, in spending millions of tax dollars for urban renewal, a 12,000-sq. foot facility to shelter police anti-gang units. Activists will gather outside a Rockwood Police Station that has fallen into disuse after a taxpayer-funded remodel. They will be within sight of the new, East Multnomah County Courthouse that cost nearly $20 million dollars and is secure from the people. Protestors will be within sight of the recently refurbished Max station, also costing millions of taxpayer dollars. After hearing civil rights speakers, the group will march to the $777,000 site the GRC plans to spend $3.3 million dollars for an interrogation facility that can also be used for public meetings.
The group will highlight the injustice of race-based policing, housing and health care. They will demonstrate that racial fears (described as 'gang violence') are used to divert community redevelopment funds from the needs of a livable community and fruitful financial endeavors to build police enforcement facilities