Oracle Park concession workers threaten to strike over hazard pay after many test COVID-19 positive
SAN FRANCISCO - Hundreds of concession workers at Oracle Park in San Francisco could go on strike this weekend after multiple workers have become infected with COVID-19, officials with the union representing the workers said Thursday.
If the workers vote to strike on Saturday, workers could possibly walk off the job just before the San Francisco Giants game against the Los Angeles Dodgers scheduled for that evening.
Union officials with Unite Here Local 2 allege that although food service contractor Bon Appetit Management assured the workers that Oracle Park would be a safe environment when it reopened at full capacity in June, indoor mask mandates and social distancing protocols aren't being enforced at the park, including at concourse concession stands and private suites.
Since the park reopened, more than 20 workers tested positive for COVID-19, union officials said.
With mask requirements allegedly going unenforced and an uptick in COVID-19 cases, the workers are demanding hazard pay of an extra $3 per hour.
In addition, because workers have to work 10 events per month to qualify for health care but only have nine events scheduled for some of the coming months, the workers are asking Bon Appetit to lower the threshold for health care eligibility to nine events per month.
"These corporations' approach to workers and fans' safety during this latest surge of COVID-19 is completely inadequate and dangerously irresponsible," Unite Here Local 2 president Anand Singh said in a statement.
"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," Singh said.
Workers are set to vote on the strike on Saturday at 2 p.m.
In response to the possible strike, a spokesperson with Bon Appetit said, "We value our associates' contributions and have always supported their right to organize. We look forward to working toward an agreement."