Posts Tagged ‘blight’

Ex-offenders and low-income youth help reduce vandalism in Oakland through graffiti abatement program

Oakland Community and Economic Development Agency has partnered with service organizations to create job opportunities for out-of-work youth while mitigating blight in the city’s commercial corridors. The city’s partnership with Men of Valor, a non-profit re-entry program in East Oakland that provides housing, job training and other services to high school drop-outs, recovering addicts and the formerly incarcerated, has proven so successful since it began in June—removing about 114 graffiti markings from 88 businesses along Foothill and International boulevards—that in October CEDA decided to expand the program and take on new partners.

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Beating back Oakland’s blight

City of Oakland blight inspector

In Oakland’s Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, building inspector Ed Labayog walks past a line of nearly a hundred people waiting to apply for a job with the city on his way to the street where his car is parked. Wearing a black button-up City of Oakland shirt and carrying a bag containing case files, a camera, and his lunch, he’s setting out to find blighted properties. For Labayog, seeking out trash, graffiti and signs of crumbling structures on private property is his job.

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