Oakland Rises (End the Criminalization of Our People)

Dear Friends,

As the globe wades through unprecedented uncertainty, our commitment to supporting movements fighting for racial justice in Oakland will not waver. We are inspired by the freedom fighters in our communities who in this very moment are confronting unforeseen challenges with spirited struggle and solidarity.

In observance of March 21, the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, we are sharing Akonadi Foundation’s 2020 Racial Justice Poster, Oakland Rises (End the Criminalization of Our People), by artist Natalia Anciso. This day commemorates the Sharpeville massacre of March 21, 1960, when the South African anti-apartheid movement rose up in resistance against ‘pass’ laws. These laws required Black people to carry identity cards. On that day in the Sharpeville township, as movement leaders, elders, and children gathered in peaceful protest, police opened fire and killed 69 people, among them 10 children.

This year’s Racial Justice Poster honors the movement to end the criminalization of young people of color. Culture plays an essential role in fueling the radical reimagining of what anti-racist policies and spaces can look and feel like. Through commissioning and distributing this piece, we strive to elevate the legacy of cultural resistance.

Our staff and board are grateful for Oakland’s organizers, strategists, cultural workers, and sacred community healers, who together will win the justice and humanity we all deserve.

We hope that you’ll share the poster through your social media channels. Please share a picture of yourself or your organization with the poster, using the hashtag #RJPP2020 @akonadi_oakland. To learn more or to request a poster please visit www.Akonadi.org.

With Gratitude,

Lateefah Simon

“I was inspired to focus my piece, Oakland Rises (End the Criminalization of Our People), on the hope and determination that youth of color bring in the face of systemic racism and criminalization.” – Natalia Anciso