SF Oracle Park workers vote to strike after reporting 20+ COVID infections

Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) — Ballpark workers at Oracle Park in San Francisco announced a strike vote after they say more than 20 workers contracted COVID-19.

The strike vote was organized by hundreds of concessions workers at Oracle Park who are employed by the San Francisco Giants’ food service contractor Bon Appetit and represented by hospitality workers’ union UNITE HERE.

The voting was held on Saturday and an overwhelming 96.7% of food service workers voted to strike as negotiations over COVID-19 safety, health care and hazard pay stalled between UNITE HERE Local 2 and Bon Appetit.

Workers said at least 20 concessions workers have been infected with COVID-19 since the stadium reopened back in June.

“The Giants have failed to mandate and/or enforce masks and social distancing at concourse concessions stands, private suites, and more, and food service workers frequently have to deal with maskless guests who are often drinking,” a statement from UNITE HERE read, in part.

Ballpark workers say they have struggled during the lockdown without secure health care and with little support from the Giants or Bon Appetit.

Workers currently have to work 10 events per month to qualify for health insurance. But workers say in recent months they have only nine events scheduled, meaning workers who work every event would be denied health care.

Ballparker workers are now asking to lower the eligibility threshold to nine events per month.

Before reopening, Bon Appetit allegedly promised workers that hazard pay wasn’t necessary because the Oracle Park would be a safe place to work. But workers say mask and social distancing measures aren’t being enforced and COVID-19 cases are on the rise.

Workers are demanding hazard pay of $3 per hour.

“These corporations’ approach to workers and fans’ safety during this latest surge of COVID-19 is completely inadequate and dangerously irresponsible,” Anand Singh, President of UNITE HERE Local 2, said. “Our members have carried on through this pandemic without fair compensation and security in our health insurance, while the Giants have continued to reap profits. We are ready to fight for our health, our safety, and for justice at the ballpark.”

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