Utility company Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), servicing about 16 million people, finds itself in an astonishing predicament. Due to escalating crime rates in Oakland, PG&E is resorting to hiring off-duty Oakland police officers to safeguard its workers. Astonishingly, these crews are not targeted for utility equipment alone, but also personal belongings such as cell phones and wallets. Crime rates, according to Oakland Police, have surged by 22% compared to last year. Furthermore, robberies aren’t exclusive to potential high-stake targets like jewelers but have trickled down to utility crews. Barry Donlin, president of the Oakland Police Officers Association Union, highlights that such levels of criminal activity emphasize the dire state of public safety in the city. The key question that emerges: With PG&E incurring over half a million dollars annually for added protection, will the residents bear the brunt of these increased costs?
#OaklandSafetyCrisis #UtilityCrewsTargeted #CrimeWave2023
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