(April 9th, 2009) Oakland, CA. At 10:00 am this morning, community members organized by the No Justice No BART campaign were engaged in a productive dialogue with the BART Board of Directors. We were moving towards calendaring and collaborating on a previously agreed upon public forum to address the New Year’s Day shooting of Oscar Grant III and the future of the BART police department. We were specifically emphasizing an accessible meeting, as their meetings thus far have been at times and locations that are almost impossible for working people to attend.
In the midst of this process, the meeting was interrupted by the independent actions of an attendee upset over the shooting of Oscar Grant. We recognize the immense frustration about BART’s response to the shooting, and also recognize that tensions in the room and emotions in the community run high. At the same time, we deeply regret the incident that occurred. This disruption was in no way a goal for today’s meeting, and we are upset that it interrupted our dialogue. We feel it went against the collective understanding and intention that we had established as a group prior to the meeting, which was to reach common ground with the BART Board on our demand to move forward with public community meetings.
No Justice No BART regrets today’s unfortunate incident and does not condone this action. We look forward to continuing our principled dialogue and negotiation with the BART Board, while working together towards our shared goal of holding public forums in the community.
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