Noni Session, Candidate for Oakland City Council District 3


session Noni Session is a community activist. Find out more about her at

1 – What do you think should be Oakland’s response to the lack of housing stock? Do you support having a moratorium of any kind on rent increases, stronger rent control measures, restrictions on sales to foreign nationals? Please elaborate.

Oakland’s lack of housing stock requires a multi dimensional approach. To start, we should not be auctioning off public land to developers, especially at such cut rates. That land must be used to develop housing more in line with the median Oaklander’s salary. As well rent increase should have remained on moratorium until we are able to get strong and enforceable protections through the ballot. Going forward, rent control will be a necessary part of keeping the housing market stable.

2 – Do you support the measure creating a Police Commission that’s on the November ballot? What changes would you have made to it? What do you propose the City Council do to address the systemic issues of police brutality and misconduct?

I will vigorously support measure LL. We have to continue to develop solutions for issues such as police brutality such as increase local recruitment; reducing draconian and discriminatory policies that inhibit the development of a diverse (social, economically, experientially), incentivizing living within the city where you police, and adding a human rights element to police training and education requirements

3 – What do you propose to do to address issues of gangs, street violence and drug addiction in Oakland?

Street violence grows out of unoccupied youth. Primarily I will work to ensure that our city is working in true partnership with the departments that have traditionally occupied our youth such as parks and recreation, as well as the Mayor’s summer jobs program. Additionally, adults should be served by neighborhood jobs centers as opposed to having to struggle to reach centralized employment offices that may not understand their specific place based needs. Drug addiction as well should be treated as a social illness as opposed to a crime. Using a social ills model has been demonstrated in other municipalities to bring down the rates of long term drug addiction.

4 – How do you propose Oakland should respond to formerly incarcerated citizens reĀ­entering the community? What will you do to support community-based support services for formerly incarcerated citizens?

Again, place based job centers, or one stop job centers can be designed to serve populations needing additional support such as when transitioning out of the prison setting. We also need to ‘ban the box’ so that these citizens are not forced to readjusted while dealing with a stigma that never goes away no mare what ways they seek to reform themselves.

5 – Do you support a sales tax on soft drinks? What’s your general view about sales taxes?

I support the sugar tax as a disincentive to consume poisonous sugary drinks. In general I find sales taxes to be a regressive tax passed onto consumers without asking manufacturers to bear some of the costs of producing items that are clearly causing major health crises in our communities

6 – How do you propose Oakland address the causes and effects of climate change? Do you have specific policy recommendations for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in Berkeley? How do you propose it prepare for sea level rises?

In order for Oakland to make a real contribution to addressing climate change, Oakland must begin to bring its economy into alignment with 21 st century goals. Just one of those is prioritizing planning for ‘complete’ communities with the goal of reducing the need for driving. As well our public transportation system should continue to be expanded so as to reduce fossil fuel use for commute times.

7 – Have you ever been accused of any impropriety related to your serving in a governmental position? Please describe what took place. How do you think the Oakland City Council should address impropriety or appearance of impropriety by its members?

I have not been accused of or associated with any impropriety related to serving in government. With any appearance of impropriety, especially those actions that come under official investigation, administrative leave should be a standard measure.

8 – Can you share an instance where you have shown moral courage? (i.e. standing up for your values in the face of opposition or other negative consequences).

Moral courage is my personal principle and core identity. Running for this seat is only my latest show of moral courage. When I arrived at Contra Costa County Library system I found that minors of colors were disproportionally being removed from the library. I stood up against this system wide practice and suffered severe consequences as an outcome, but I do not regret it for a second. Youth are now safer because of my insistence that we all deserve fair and balanced treatment.

9 – How many individuals have contributed to your campaign? Do you or your campaign have a financial relationship with a member of the ACDCC? Who and in what capacity?

About 50 individuals have contributed to my campaign thus far. Neither I nor my campaign has a financial relationship with any member for ACDCC.

10 – Are you running as a Berniecrat?

If you mean do I have very liberal, socially conscious, anti war, anti violence, justice based, community loving views, then yes.