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September 23, 2023




A September 14-18, 2023, survey of likely voters revealed that Public Safety dominates Oakland voters’ concerns.  Eighty three percent (83%) of the respondents ranked Public Safety and Crime as their number one issue and ninety two percent (92%) want their leaders to focus on reducing crime.


Seventy four percent (74%) of likely voters want to increase the police force from the current number of 723 officers to 1,000. Seventy four percent (74%) of Oakland voters say things in Oakland are going in the wrong direction. Similarly, seventy four percent (74%) believe the quality of life in Oakland has gotten worse.  


The majority of Oakland voters disapprove of the performance of their elected officials. Fifty seven (57%) percent disapprove of the way Mayor Thao is handling her job while only twenty nine (29%) approve.  Sixty six percent (66%) disapprove of the way the City Council is handling its job while only seventeen (17%) approve.

The survey revealed that Oakland voters want to see more jobs and job training in addition to more cops and a greater focus on public safety. Sixty nine percent (69%) think it is Critical/Very important to create blue collar jobs in industrial and logistic sectors.  Sixty percent (60%) say it is Critical/Very important to create jobs that do not require college degrees.  Only thirty seven percent (37%) feel that creating jobs in tech are Critical/Very important.




The survey was commissioned by The McConnell Group.  It was conducted by RG Strategies which is affiliated with Binder Research, one of the most highly regarded research companies in the country.  It was comprised on 400 likely voters, randomly selected.  Sixty five percent of the respondents identified themselves as progressives (35%) or liberals (30%). Twenty one percent (21%) identified as moderates and only 7% called themselves conservatives. 



The McConnell Group is a consulting firm specializing in Oakland economic development. In 2006 The McConnell Group co-founded the Jobs and Housing Coalition which was comprised of major developers and employers dedicated to growing Oakland. Until then, Oakland had always been described as a city with potential.  We wanted to make it thrive and we succeeded.


Between 2006 and 2021 we grew Oakland’s population by 40,139 people. During that period our developers built nearly 18,000 housing units to accommodate existing and new residents in Oakland.  Large businesses filled Oakland’s office spaces.  Restaurants sprung up and Oakland developed a reputation as an upcoming foodie and tourist destination.


Unfortunately, that has changed. Today, many office buildings are half empty, new development of residential housing has stalled, restaurants are shuttered, and small businesses have been forced to close.  Oakland’s population is declining by 1.3% per year.


But all is not lost.  Resilient people live and work in Oakland. They are committed to making Oakland a place where residents, from the flats to the hills, and the east to the west, live in peace, with clean and safe streets, and where businesses small and large can thrive.  


The McConnell Group releases this survey with hope that it will shock the system and bring about change. 

Below please find the final results of an Oakland Voter Survey on Public Safety conducted September 14 through 18, 2023. 



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