Warriors Back in The Town –
It was Coach Steve Kerr’s idea. After sitting on a panel with Mike McLively of Gifford’s Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, he asked if Mike could put together a meeting of violence prevention workers and agencies in Oakland. Coach Kerr would bring some Warriors players to a kind-of round table where they could learn about the plight of those affected by violence, and the many ongoing, collaborative efforts to prevent violence and heal the city of Oakland, efforts through which the city does seem to be making some real progress.
On Friday, March 6, Coach Kerr, Steph Curry and Klay Thompson came to the East Oakland Youth Development Center (EOYDC) to learn about Oakland Unite, Ceasefire, and about Youth ALIVE!’s violence interruption and homicide response programs. They also got to meet some of the key men and women working the streets to save lives. After the presentation, Klay Thompson gave an eloquent speech about his affinity for Oakland.
After meeting with the front-line workers, Coach Kerr participated in a peace walk from EOYDC to a packed Allen Temple, where a panel of local violence prevention experts and leaders answered questions about healing community trauma, the school to prison pipeline, changing systems to make Oakland a safer and fairer city, homelessness and violence. Coach Kerr emphasized that, especially as we make progress, and as other real problems arise in the city, problems like homelessness and gentrification, we must keep people talking about the violence and how to reduce even further.