East Side High School Students Unhappy With Mayor Liccardo's State of The City Address

Overfelt High School's Student group, "Curious Minds" called attention to gentrification at last Saturday’s State of the City Address hosted by their high school. While waving huge posters that were unavoidable to the Mayor Liccardo's eyes as he spoke, he did not acknowledge the concerns they held up, big and bright. Words that read, " Your Luxury is Our Displacement" and "Is this not also our home?" were issues students were pushing but were never brought up in his address.

Pictured from left to right: Vilma, Esmeralda, Emilio, Johnathan 

"The Mayor was talking about how they are going to change all the baseball fields and I have 3 brothers who all play baseball.  My Mom pays $1,200 for all 3 of them. Over the last four years nothing has changed on those fields. How can we see where the money is going?" --- Vilma, Senior  

“It’s not fair that people who are not even from the East Side of San Jose are making decisions for us. Our education is not the best that it can be.” --- Esmeralda, Senior 

Student waved their posters with messages for Mayor Licardo.

"I disliked how Sam Liccardo tried to persuade the audience that San Jose is a great city by explaining the many good activities and accomplishments a certain area has made along with his goals for San Jose. Nothing he said applied to the East Side of San Jose, he just mainly targeted the wealthier communities that are much safer than my area. He never talked about the homeless living in our local parks or driveways because he forced them to leave their home, The Jungle (the largest homeless encampment in the country shut down at the end of 2014), causing them to live in Downtown or the East Side.

Mayor Liccardo didn't mention the cops in our area that don't report crimes that involve shooting, robbery, or stabbing, they only report crimes that is murder to make it seem like our crime rate is low. Or how we only have one healthy store, the farmers market by Eastridge among the many fast foods and liquor stores. My area has a liquor store on every corner compared to Willow Glen having multiple healthy stores. All of that while our rent is being increased. My family in particular earns $48,000 a year with 6 kids to feed. How do you make it? Our area has very low-income families. Why can’t Liccardo raise the rent on the wealthier communities or in my opinion base the rent on a family's income?  My area – East San Jose - is constantly left out and pushed away because of our bad reputation. Besides the addition of more streetlights, nothing is being done in my area; it has been the same everyday since I was 8." --- Emilio R. Licon Alvarado, Senior

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