On Friday we spoke with D’mitra Smith, the chair of the Sonoma County Human Rights Commission. The commission recently released a report on human rights violations during the Santa Rosa Black Lives Matter Protests. In Friday’s interview, Smith described numerous allegations of excessive use of force by local law enforcement. It’s unclear how the report will be used to investigate these events and hold officers accountable. In today’s report, KRCB’s Adia White asks Smith what she hopes will happen next.
Santa Rosa Police Chief Rainer Navarro is evaluating the report. We’ve invited him to join us for a conversation about his department’s response and hope to have him on later in the week. Read his statement at norcalpublicmedia.org.
At the beginning of July, The Sonoma County Human Rights Commission published a 40-page report titled, “Human Rights Violations in Santa Rosa California – Policing the Black Lives Matter Protests.” The report alleges numerous violations by law enforcement against protesters. KRCB’s Adia White spoke with commission chair D’mitra Smith. Smith describes the tactics used by police and how the commission evaluated them.
Read Santa Rosa Police Chief Ray Navarro’s response to the report HERE. Read the Sonoma County Human Rights Commission report HERE.
(Photo: Black Lives Matter protesters in downtown Santa Rosa – Adia White)
When Sonoma County shut down this spring, cannabis businesses, deemed essential, were allowed to stay open. Now that the county is wrestling with a plunge in tax revenues, marijuana growers and sellers see an opportunity. Loosen permitting and other restrictions, they say, and we can guarantee a boost in cash for the county. Alexa Wall, chair of the Sonoma County Growers’ Alliance, spoke with KRCB’s Adia White about the industry’s offer of help.
The State of California is suing the Trump administration over an order that aims to block undocumented immigrants from being counted in the census. The effort is likely to fail. But some fear the attempt alone may discourage immigrants from being counted. The Community Action Partnership of Sonoma County is working to ensure everyone fills out the census regardless of immigration status. KRCB’s Adia White spoke with Director of Community Engagement, Vince Harper, about the effort.
Community Action Partnership is hosting a census action week from August 1st to August 8th. Events kick off this Saturday with a celebratory caravan, starting at the Hyatt Regency and winding through North West Santa Rosa. Learn more at norcalpublicmedia.org
Yesterday, we met Kevin Shenkman. He’s the lawyer whose challenges have caused many California cities to move from at-large elections to contests by district. His reward for this campaign has included anti-Semitic slurs and death threats. Shenkman talks about his work in Sonoma County with news director Steve Mencher.
Today marks our first in-depth story as part of an election initiative we’re calling Escuchando – Spanish for “listening.” We’ll be listening to the residents in District One in Santa Rosa as they elect their first city council representative in November. The reasons that Santa Rosa is switching from an at-large system of voting to one by district are complex. But one Southern California lawyer is the catalyst for this enormous change – and over the next two days we’ll meet attorney Kevin Shenkman. He told our news director Steve Mencher how his work promoting democracy starts with key provisions of the California Voting Rights Act.
Tomorrow, we’ll learn how Kevin Shenkman’s work has affected Sonoma County.
Find more at norcalpublicmedia.org, including a video in both English and Spanish with tips about how to run for city or town council.
Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital Workers are on strike for the week to demand a safer workplace. They say Providence St. Joseph Health, which owns the hospital, is proposing to cut their health care benefits and sick leave. They also say the hospital is not providing adequate personal protective equipment in the midst of the pandemic. KRCB’s Adia White reports from the picket line.
We provide local news updates on The North Bay Report Tuesday-Friday at 6:45, 8:45 a.m., and 5:30 p.m. on KRCB radio 91 and 90.9. Here’s our North Bay Report episode for Friday, July 17. Subscribe to The North Bay Report podcast to listen on the go.
(Photo: Mito Gonzales, Taylor Davison and Steven Batson protest outside of Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital – Adia White)
The national movement for racial justice following George Floyd’s killing has found a stage in Sonoma County. Libby is a local activist working with the grassroots group Love and Light. Libby, who is biracial, queer, trans, and gender-nonconforming, asked us to not use their full name. Camille Escovedo spoke with them in June about what an alternative to policing could look like. Here’s an excerpt from their conversation.
For more information about the origins of policing and the abolitionist movement, go to norcalpublicmedia.org.
If you have another point of view, we want to hear from you.
The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors decided Tuesday to delay a decision about strengthening the county’s law enforcement watchdog agency. The board heard about an hour of public comment at this week’s meeting. The vast majority of speakers were in favor of putting an ordinance on the November ballot that would expand law enforcement transparency and oversight. KRCB’s Adia White Reports.
To learn more about the Evelyn Cheatham Ordinance, the community leader who it’s named after, and the Independent Office For Law Enforcement and Oversight visit norcalpublicmedia.org.
For more than 50 years, one of the pleasures of summer life in the Bay Area has been the outdoor performances of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. This summer, of course, the season is cancelled. And so the Mime Troupe brings its progressive politics and guerilla theater to the radio, as lyricist/composer Daniel Savio told KRCB news director Steve Mencher.
We wanted to have Daniel Savio remind us about the importance to Bay Area history of his father, Mario Savio, so we asked him about his dad.