Public Risks from the Woolsey Fire and the Santa Susana Field Laboratory: A Letter to DTSC

Prior to the first round of data analysis, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control reported that its scientists “do not believe the fire caused any releases of hazardous materials that would pose a risk to people exposed to the smoke.”

“A common denominator in every single nuclear accident – a nuclear plant or on a nuclear submarine – is that before the specialists even know what has happened, they rush to the media saying, ‘There’s no danger to the public.’ They do this before they themselves know what has happened because they are terrified that the public might react violently, either by panic or by revolt.”

—Jacques-Yves Cousteau

On November 19, representatives Henry Stern and Jesse Gabriel authored a joint letter to Barbara Lee, Director of the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC). In their letter, posted to social media, Senator Stern and Assemblymember Gabriel call for “full transparency” to “ensure the public is fully aware of any public health risks posed by the Woolsey Fire on Santa Susana Field Laboratory.”

Henry Stern represents nearly 1 million residents of the 27th Senate District, which includes Agoura Hills, Calabasas, Hidden Hills, Malibu, Moorpark, Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village, part of Santa Clarita and the following Los Angeles communities: Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Encino, Porter Ranch, Reseda, Lake Balboa, Tarzana, West Hills, Winnetka, and Woodland Hills.

Jesse Gabriel represents Assembly District 45 comprised of the cities of Calabasas and Hidden Hills, a small portion of unincorporated Ventura County and several neighborhoods in the City of Los Angeles: Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Encino, Northridge, Reseda, Tarzana, Warner Center, West Hills, Winnetka, and Woodland Hills.

Senator Stern and Assemblymember Gabriel outline five specific requests regarding transparency from the DTSC, and conclude, “Given the serious and unsettling nature of this situation, we respectfully request that all information and data be disclosed as quickly as possible. Our community—and the broader public—deserve answers.”

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Rally for Rent Control in Santa Cruz

Measure M would apply to rentals in the City of Santa Cruz. The measure is divided into three main sections: rent control, just cause eviction, and a rent board.

[ Students United with Renters carry a “Yes on M” banner at the intersection of Mission and Bay in Santa Cruz as part of the Rally Against Big Money and Predatory Landlords. October 11, 2018. ]

Dozens rallied in Santa Cruz on Thursday, October 11 to draw support for Measure M, a local rent control initiative. The measure will expand tenant protections and limit rent increases where possible. Proponents say Measure M would help community members who are struggling financially, including families, students, and seniors, afford to stay in Santa Cruz.

Community members, brought together by Students United with Renters, began gathering at Trescony Park at 4:30 p.m. According to their website, “SUR is a collaborative group of student and non-student renters and community members of Santa Cruz organizing for housing justice for all and the stability of our community. We are working to address out-of-control rents and a lack of protection for tenants and houseless people from abuses, intimidation, and eviction.”

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Fourth Annual March to Reclaim King’s Radical Legacy

Recuperation is a process by which radical ideas and images are commodified within media culture and society, and thus become interpreted through a more socially conventional perspective.

[ Young Activists for Black Lives Coalition carry a “Reimagining the Dream” banner through the streets of Oakland during the Fourth Annual March to Reclaim King’s Radical Legacy. January 15, 2018. ]

For the fourth year in a row, for 96 hours over the Martin Luther King Day Weekend, the Anti Police-Terror Project and comrades took to the streets “to stand in solidarity and say no to white supremacy, say no to state sponsored terror, say no to development over people, say no to misogyny, say no to homophobia and transphobia, say no to the targeting of immigrants, say no to the targeting of Muslims.”

In their call to action, the Anti Police-Terror Project (APTP) states, “Join us and show the Trump-Schaaf Regimes that WE WILL NOT COMPLY with their corporate agenda.”

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Solidarity in San José with Millions for Prisoners March in DC

Created to honor the deaths of George and Jonathan Jackson—freedom fighters who were killed by authorities in the early 70s—Black August holds a long tradition and legacy of resistance.

[ Prisoner solidarity activists, including Troy, Nube, Raymond, Cole, Watani, Dorsey, and Julia, at the Millions for Prisoners march and rally in San José on August 19, 2017. ]

Text used for this article was originally written by The Fire Inside collective. Photos and the first two paragraphs are by Bradley Allen, reporting on the march and rally in San José, California on August 19, 2017 in solidarity with the Millions for Prisoners March in Washington DC. The iamWe Prison Advocacy Network organized the mobilization in DC, and reports there were over a dozen solidarity demonstrations on August 19. All photos and text are published in solidarity with prisoners, however they do not necessarily represent the views of the rally organizers and its wide range of participants.

Activists from throughout the Bay Area gathered at Raymond Bernal Jr. Memorial Park at 7th and Mission Streets in San José. At the park, an audio statement was broadcast from political prisoner Joka Heshima Jinsai, founder of “Amend The 13th: Abolish ‘Legal’ Slavery in Amerika Movement.” From there, over one hundred people marched on the sidewalks through Northern California’s largest city, and past a long row of bail bonds storefronts. The demonstration featured a rally at James P. McEntee Plaza, next to Santa Clara County’s notorious Main Jail, with passionate speakers from San José and surrounding communities, including Watani Stiner, Dorsey Nunn, Laurie Valdez, Troy Williams, Raymond Aguilar, Sean Ramsey, Cole Dorsey, and more.

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Heather’s Patisserie Turns Off the Oven

After more than thirteen years of providing the finest in Parisian style pastries and cakes, baked fresh on site daily, Heather’s Patisserie is closing up shop.

[ Fresh baked breads are displayed, along with croissants, scones, turnovers, sticky buns, cinnamon rolls, cookies, cakes, and other desserts, at Heather’s Patisserie in Aptos. August 13, 2017. ]

Heather Liner created her last lemon olallieberry scone for Heather’s Patisserie in Aptos, California on August 13, 2017. After more than thirteen years of providing the finest in Parisian style pastries and cakes, baked fresh on site daily, Heather’s Patisserie is closing up shop. Since January 2003, Heather’s served up a wide variety of baked goods including breads, muffins, danishes, croissants, cookies, chocolates, confections, cakes and wedding cakes.

From 2001-2015, Heather was also the owner and operator of The Kind Grind, a cafe located on the South-East side of the small craft harbor that featured a fantastic view of the beach, a wide selection of pastries, sandwiches, smoothies, and coffee drinks.

Heather’s Patisserie featured a deli for hot breakfast and lunch, including fresh soups made daily. The patisserie was a great spot to stop for a flaky handmade croissant with a fresh cup of organic coffee or an espresso drink, and then stay longer to enjoy a panini sandwich prepared on their fresh bread.

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