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Indybay Feature
Tue Apr 30 2013 (Updated 06/09/13)
May Day: The Fight for $15 Kicks Off in Oakland
May Day Demonstrations Across Northern California Demand Justice for Workers & Immigrants
On May Day 2013, the fight for a $15 "Livable Wage" came to Oakland. New York City led the way with two walkouts by low-wage workers in the fast-food industry, the first in November 2012, and the second on April 4, 2013. In November, about 200 New York fast-food workers at 30 stores went on strike for a $15 hourly wage. Then nearly 400 workers walked out. Next up was Chicago on April 24, 2013. Hundreds of fast food and retail employees in Chicago began a mass walkout, calling for the city’s minimum wage to be raised to $15 an hour. Then it was Oakland's turn. Organized by the Livable Wage Assembly, an outgrowth of Occupy Oakland's Labor Solidarity Committee (the group which organized the December 12, 2011 shutdown of the Port of Oakland), their first action was a rally at Oscar Grant Plaza and noise demonstration through the streets of Oakland on May 1 to raise awareness of the campaign. Organizers sought to enable the struggle of low-wage workers to challenge their bosses for a livable wage. The City of Oakland's minimum wage is just $8.00/hr, the same as California's, making life difficult for many as housing costs continue to rise. The noise demo focused on companies like McDonalds, Walgreens, Rite-Aid, Taco Bell and a host of other chains in the downtown area. The noise march in Oakland followed a Sin Fronteras march from Fruitvale BART station earlier in the day.

Immigrant rights and labor actions took place in many Bay Area and Northern California cities on May Day including San Francisco, San Jose, Salinas, Watsonville, and Santa Cruz. On May 3, protests continued at the La Playa hotel in Carmel.

San Francisco: photo Marchers Speak Out For Justice | calendar Anti-Capitalist March and Occupations, 12pm | LaborFest Screening of "Dreamwork China" At ILWU Local 34, 7pm

Oakland: photo A Perfect Day for a March. A Perfect Beginning For The Fight For $15 | video photo May Day march for immigrant rights | calendar Oakland Sin Fronteras Fruitvale march and rally, 3pm | calendar Autonomous/Anarchist People of Color Contingent, 3pm | calendar May Day: Fight for $15! , 5pm

Mountain View: photo March for Immigrant Rights

San Jose: calendar May Day March - International Workers' Day, 3pm

Fresno: video May Day march for Immigrant Rights

Salinas: calendar May Day Rally for Immigration Reform, 12pm

Watsonville: calendar May Day Rally for Immigration Reform, 6:30pm

Santa Cruz: photo Rallying for Immigration Reform on May Day in Santa Cruz | calendar May Day Rally for Immigration Reform, 5:30pm

Read More: photo May Day: The Fight for $15 Comes to Oakland | photo Call to improve wages and working conditions for restaurant workers! | calendar May Day (May 3rd) Rally at La Playa Carmel | Fightfor15Oakland.org

Previous Related Indybay Features: Nationwide May Day General Strike Looms Large Locally with Diverse Actions Across Bay Area (2012) | May Day in Santa Cruz: Creating an Ongoing Network of Solidarity (2012)
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