San Francisco and Oakland residents are being evicted as a result of increasing housing costs caused in part by an influx of tech employees, many of whom are provided private buses by their employers to get to offices in the Silicon Valley. Activists first blocked a Google bus in the Mission District of San Francisco on December 9. On December 20, protesters blocked a Google bus at the MacArthur BART station and another at 7th and Adeline in West Oakland. In San Francisco, an Apple bus was blocked at 24th and Valencia Streets.
On December 9, which was one of the coldest days of the season, the eviction of the Albany Bulb began. Workers from the City of Albany's Department of Public Works used a backhoe to dismantle homes located at the autonomous wild space where people have lived and created art for decades. Bulb residents' belongings were thrown in dump trucks behind the lines of Albany police.
Lively protests took over McDonald's restaurants in the Bay Area on December 5 as part of a nationwide series of actions organized by Fast Food Forward, a joint effort by community and labor groups. Young workers in Oakland celebrated and danced as much as they protested, and a raucous rally was held in San José. The rallies demanded a $15 an hour minimum wage for fast-food workers.
The Oakland City Council has agreed to settle Kayvan Sabeghi's federal civil rights lawsuit for $645,000. Sabeghi's spleen was lacerated during an Occupy Oakland demonstration on November 2, 2011, when he was beaten by Oakland Police Officer Frank Uu Uu, now retired, who was part of a tight-knit group of SWAT/"Tango team" officers at the heart of OPD's violent misconduct toward Occupy Oakland demonstrators.
On November 29, Black Friday 2013, Walmart employees, family members, and allies protested at hundreds of Walmart stores across the U.S. to demand improved working conditions, including increased wages, full-time jobs, and an end to retaliatory practices against those who stand up for workers' rights. Among other Northern California outlets of the retail giant that were targeted, demonstrations were held in San Leandro, Roseville, and Fresno/Clovis. Fifteen people in Roseville and five people in San Leandro were arrested for civil disobedience.
Gentrification is a growing issue in neighborhoods across the Bay Area. Many areas in San Francisco, Oakland, and other cities look completely different now than even ten years ago, and the process appears to be accelerating. The East Bay Solidarity Network has produced a 79-page pamphlet entitled Evict This!
which breaks down the history of displacement in Oakland and the resources available to fight the ongoing gentrification.
Independent truckers staged a job action that slowed work at the Port of Oakland on November 27. It was the truckers' third job action since August. The Port of Oakland Truckers Association (POTA) said the strike was “in protest of unsafe working conditions and unfair labor practices by terminal owners and Port of Oakland management.“ About a hundred independent truckers were joined by at least that many community and labor supporters at the entrances to the SSA terminal. Five people were arrested and at least two were injured by cars crossing the picket lines.