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Uber has announced plans to move into the former Sears building in downtown Oakland. Although details of Uber’s plans keep changing, many Oaklanders think Uber doesn’t belong in this historically diverse and working-class city that’s already struggling with gentrification and displacement — problems Uber’s arrival – as the leading edge of a growing tech wave — will likely make worse.

We say NO to Uber in Oakland — unless the company makes concrete commitments to protect our city’s workers, small and minority-owned businesses, and community groups while upholding our city’s values.

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In Oakland and throughout the Bay Area, a technology-driven economy has spurred a galloping gentrification and displacement crisis, squeezing workers and disrupting affordable living conditions, resulting in an economy that works spectacularly well for some and leaves others to wonder whether they will even have a roof over their heads. Working families and local nonprofits struggle to cope with soaring rents stimulated by the tech boom. Uber’s arrival in Oakland will ratchet up these pressures and will set a pattern for other tech companies coming into our city.

Residents wonder how many of these new tech jobs will go to Oaklanders, and whether local businesses will get a fair share of contracting opportunities. We also worry about Uber’s tendency to ignore rules and regulations and its willingness to work with political leaders who don’t share Oakland’s values. And we can’t ignore Uber’s questionable treatment of its drivers and the disruption its business model causes to taxi service and public transit.

Even if it moves in gradually, as recent reports indicate, Uber will have a huge impact on every aspect of our community, and that brings with it a responsibility to be a good neighbor to Oakland’s people, businesses and neighborhood institutions.

Uber isn’t just another business coming to our town. Even if it moves in gradually, as recent reports indicate, It will have a huge impact on every aspect of our community. Just as important, Uber represents the leading edge of a growing tech wave that could swamp our city. That brings with it a responsibility to be a good neighbor to Oakland’s people, businesses and neighborhood institutions – and to set a positive example for other companies moving into downtown.  Large companies like Uber can serve as anchor institutions that bring meaningful benefits to communities — if they listen to community concerns and make a serious effort to address them.

To be welcome in Oakland, Uber must change. We demand that Uber work with the community to hammer out a constructive agenda to ensure that Oakland’s diverse residents have access to good jobs (not just part-time driving gigs), local nonprofits and minority-owned businesses remain strong, and that the tech boom doesn’t displace working families, community organizations and local artists. So far, we’ve seen no sign that Uber is willing to do so.

Unless that changes, we will continue to say NO to Uber. We invite you to join us.