OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) — Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf will announce holiday public safety initiatives for the city’s downtown and retail districts on Wednesday. The mayor will be joined by the Chamber of Commerce, local business organizations and representatives of the Oakland Police Department.

According to a news release from the mayor’s office, the initiatives will be directed toward enhancing safety in Oakland’s shopping districts through the holiday season and improving overall safety in Downtown Oakland for workers and visitors.

At the press conference, OPD announced its “Holiday Safety Strategy” to increase presence in business locations where people shop and dine.

Two public safety initiatives were announced at the news conference:

Shop Safe Oakland

  • Immediate expansion of civilian ambassadors and security used in shopping areas through the holidays
  • Grants to commercial organizations to help store owners purchase and install additional security and improve lighting
  • Expanded coordination and shared communications equipment between OPD and commercial organizations

Welcome Back Downtown

  • Immediate expansion of daytime security and civilian ambassadors
  • Creation of new nighttime security ambassadors
  • Nighttime traffic control and illegal vending enforcement
  • Grants to downtown building owners to help purchase and install additional security improvements and improve lighting

“As we enter the 2022 holiday season and the City of Oakland and other large employers in the downtown area prepare (or continue) to reopen, the City wishes to take actions to improve safety in the downtown area and other business and entertainment corridors of the city,” ready a release from the mayor’s office in part.

The mayor’s announcement follows a similar announcement this week from San Francisco Mayor London Breed. Crime and public safety have been big issues politically in the Bay Area. In San Francisco, that has led to the recall of progressive district attorney Chesa Boudin and the election of moderate successor Brooke Jenkins.

Across the Bay in Oakland, voters took a more progressive track, electing liberal councilmember Sheng Thao over the more moderate, law-enforcement-minded Loren Taylor.