OAKLAND, Calif., Dec. 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The longest strike in the City of Oakland's recent memory continues for the seventh day in a row today. Over the weekend City of Oakland Negotiators finally agreed on a mediator with its largest union, SEIU 1021, which represents 2,000 striking workers. The two sides are scheduled to meet later this morning with the mediator.
"This is a small step in the right direction," said Felipe Cuevas, an Oakland heavy equipment mechanic and SEIU 1021 City of Oakland Chapter president, as he explained what the meeting means for the striking workers. "After eight months of bad faith bargaining and delays from City Negotiators, we're hopeful that they will use this opportunity to work with the mediator and with the workers to reach a fair agreement."
"To avert a strike, our sister union offered to go into informal mediation with the help of Mayor Willie Brown," said Renee Sykes of IFPTE 21, the union representing 1,000 striking city workers. "Mayor Schaaf and her negotiators refused. Since then, we have seen her bargain through the media instead of sitting down and trying to work through the issues with us. It's about time the City Negotiators try to work this out, instead of misleading the public about what this strike is all about."
At issue in the strike is eight months of negotiations of bad faith bargaining from City Negotiators, in addition to Mayor Schaaf and her administration's failure to address understaffed departments, vacancy and retention problems, health and safety issues for the community caused by a shortage of illegal dumping crews, mandatory overtime for emergency dispatchers, and an increasing reliance on temporary part time employees to service the growing city.
Striking workers will begin setting up pickets throughout Oakland in the early morning, including in front of Oakland City Hall at 7:00 am.
SOURCE IFPTE Local 21; SEIU Local 1021