Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf (Photo/Wikimedia)
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf (Photo/Wikimedia)

East Bay officials to address antisemitism at press conference

An ongoing public campaign organized by the Jewish Community Relations Council will bring prominent East Bay politicians together with community leaders on Oct. 25 to call out antisemitism, and to show solidarity with one another.

The press conference, to be held in person at Oakland’s Temple Beth Abraham, will include Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguin, state Sens. Steve Glazer and Bob Wieckowski and Assemblymember Buffy Wicks, the JCRC announced. Attendance is invitation-only but the event will be livestreamed here beginning at 11:30 a.m.

Planning to attend are Jewish community leaders, including Rabbis Mark Bloom of Beth Abraham and Jacqueline Mates-Muchin of Temple Sinai, as well as Carl Chan, president of the Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Congress. Following a spate of assaults targeting Asian Americans during the pandemic, Temple Sinai donated $7,000 recently to help improve security in Oakland’s Chinatown.

JCRC, with support from the Jewish Community Federation & Endowment Fund,  launched “Here I Am,” a public campaign to combat antisemitism, in response to antisemitic incidents over the summer in San Francisco around the Israel-Gaza conflict, and a rise in antisemitic acts around the country. The Oakland press conference follows a similar gathering held across the Bay in July that brought together San Francisco Mayor London Breed, California Attorney General Rob Bonta, state Sen. Scott Wiener and other dignitaries to the steps of Congregation Emanu-El.

The campaign calls on members of the Bay Area community to record cellphone videos telling personal stories about their encounters with antisemitism, and to share them on social media. Some of the videos can be viewed here.