Thousands of Oakland workers going on strike, unions say

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- If you are going to your local library in Oakland Tuesday, don't expect to get any help from the librarians or their aides.

They are expected to join about 3,000 city workers planning to go on a strike for an indefinite period of time, starting Tuesday. The protest will last at least one day.

Their union, SEIU Local 1021 also represents street clean-up crews, parking enforcement officials, Head Start teachers and nearly every public worker in the city. Public Safety employees are excluded.
They are complaining about understaffed city departments, health and safety issues and the city's reliance on temporary part-time workers.

Lina Hernandez is a library aide who said she doesn't get the same benefits or healthcare coverage as a full-time staffer.

And Ivan Satterfield, who works a one of several clean-up crews in the city, said he's concerned about his health every time he is asked to clean up a homeless encampment.

"Let's now forget, San Diego recently had a hepatitis outbreak within their homeless population," said Satterfield.
So far, both the union and city have agreed on the framework for the first year of the contract, which includes a 4 percent salary increase. Negotiations on the second year of the agreement are stalled.

The union has told the city it would call off the strike if they sign a first-year agreement while continuing to hammer out the details of the second year. The city had until 1:30 this afternoon to respond.

"The City of Oakland cannot offer more than it can afford," said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, "and it cannot come at the expense of the services we provide."

The City has cancelled all City Council Committee meetings for December 5.

Programs and facilities that will be closed include:
Head Start and Early Head Start sites
Senior Centers
Public libraries
Recreation centers and programs, including after school programs
Multipurpose Senior Services Program (MSSP): No case management services for frail seniors except for scheduled home visits
No brown bag food distribution

Civic Center buildings: City Hall, 150 and 250 Frank Ogawa Plaza:

Parking Citation Assistance Center closed
Housing Assistance Center closed
No sale of paratransit taxi/bus vouchers
No fire inspections
No Fire Department plan checking and permits
No building inspections
Business Tax License closed
Business Assistance Center closed
Planning & Building Permit Counter closed

Other services that will be unavailable include:
No parking enforcement
No street sweeping
No public restrooms at City facilities
No routine maintenance work
No abandoned auto detail
No crime or traffic reports
For towed vehicles, OPD will provide a vehicle release form at the Police Administration Building, 455 7th Street, 1st floor, Records window.

Oakland's animal shelter will provide limited services during the strike:
The Oakland Animal Shelter (OAS) will be open during regular hours for owners looking to reclaim their lost animals and for members of the public who must bring in stray or surrendered animals.
Routine services such as adoptions and licensing will not occur.
Partner agencies will transfer animals from OAS' care so that they may be adopted through alternate channels.
Volunteers will assist management to care for the animals in the shelter.
Calls for emergency response on animal-related matters should be directed to OPD.
Calls for routine services including dead animal pickup, strays, and other non-emergency calls will be delayed for the duration of the strike.

Some services will remain available, including:
Pay a parking citation
Report and track non-emergency problems, such as graffiti, illegal dumping or potholes
Report non-emergency crimes
Renew a residential parking permit
Pay a delinquent garbage bill
Download agenda reports and legislative actions of the City Council
Register for a City of Oakland dog license
Register for Parks and Recreation activities and classes
Review the library's Online Catalog and web-based services
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