The city of Oakland lies on the North West Coast of California. With a total population of roughly 425,000 people, the city is named the largest in the East Bay region of the San Francisco area. This district enrolls over 50,000 students in their school system.
For this quiet city of Oakland, there has been a great deal of commotion the past couple of days. The Oakland town hall has been crowded with enraged teachers and school district employees. After two consecutive years of failed negotiations between the union and the school system, the teachers have reached their breaking point and decided it is time to go on strike. These teachers are on strike for several purposes.
More than 1,000 Oakland teachers are fighting for what they believe to be a better overall lifestyle. They are asking for a 12 percent raise over the next three years, along with more school nurses, councilors and smaller class sizes. Teachers believe that the school system will function better and benefit students if their demands are met. The district is arguing that the Oakland school district cannot afford a 12 percent increase, instead they offered a six percent raise.
Their strike has been nothing but verbal conversations and peaceful actions. This was true until Monday night, when the Oakland Police Department received a distraught phone call reporting a shooting had occurred in the Bay Area where news crews were covering footage from the teacher strike. Two of CBS San Francisco’s news crew, Joe Vazquez and John Anglin were innocently directing interviews of Oakland school system’s teachers when they were unexpectedly approached.
Two male suspects emerged out of a car and approached the two crew members, who were directly outside their news van. The suspects pulled a gun on the crew member as they shouted in demand of the crew’s camera and equipment they were using. One of the two suspects exchanged fire with a nearby security guard.
Woefully, the security guard was rushed to the hospital due to a gunshot wound to his leg. Witnesses from further away reported hearing “a flurry of loud gunshots”. The two suspects quickly left the scene after the shots were fired. Later, it was announced that the security guard is in stable condition and slowly recovering in the hospital.
Shortly after the incident, it was reported that a 21-year old man was checked into Highland Hospital, seeking medical assistance for his multiple gunshot wounds. Police immediately arrested this man in connection to the shooting, due to how soon he checked himself into the hospital after the time of the shooting. The Oakland Police also publicly reported that there are multiple suspects arrested and being questioned.
Various cities in the area have shared their support for the Oakland community and recognized the bravery of the two news reporters, as well as the shot security guard. The injured guard was a retired Berkeley police officer who currently works part time as a security guard. The strike is still planned to continue.