Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Black Lives Matter and Labor Activists Protest at District Attorney Nancy O’Malley’s Office

By Darwin BondGraham
Tue, Nov 10, 2015 at 3:38 PM

click to enlarge Black Friday 14 supporters, labor unions, workers and others rallied outside of District Attorney Nancy O'Malley's office today. - DARWIN BONDGRAHAM
  • Darwin BondGraham
  • Black Friday 14 supporters, labor unions, workers and others rallied outside of District Attorney Nancy O'Malley's office today.
Black Lives Matter activists and the Bay Area labor movement combined forces today for a protest at the offices of Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley. The action included a sit-in inside O’Malley’s office by labor union leaders who are calling on the DA to drop charges against a group of activists known as the Black Friday 14.

In November 2014, the Black Friday 14 shut down BART services by blocking a train at the West Oakland BART station. Although the BART board of directors dropped a request that the activists pay tens of thousands of dollars in restitution, DA O’Mally has continued with plans to prosecute the group.

In May, the Alameda County Labor Council dis-invited DA O’Malley from an awards celebration in her honor after she refused a back-channel request by the unions to drop charges against the Black Friday 14.

click to enlarge Union leaders staged a sit-in inside DA O'Malley's office demanding she drop charges against the Black Friday 14. - DARWIN BONDGRAHAM
  • Darwin BondGraham
  • Union leaders staged a sit-in inside DA O'Malley's office demanding she drop charges against the Black Friday 14.
The rally at O’Malley’s Oakland office today coincided with a national day of action by the Fight for $15 movement of low-wage workers who are seeking higher pay and better working conditions. In Oakland and across the Bay Area, fast-food and other low-pay workers held rallies outside restaurants and other employers.

Fight for $15 workers converged on DA O’Malley’s office this afternoon to join members of the Black Friday 14 and their supporters.

During a “Black worker speak-out” in front of the courthouse, protesters talked about connections they see between the struggle by Black Americans against police brutality and inequality in the justice system, and economic inequalities such as low wages.

"This fight cannot be separated from labor's fight," said Millie Cleveland, and organizer with SEIU 1021.

Union leaders from UNITE HERE Local 2, UNITE HERE Local 2850, SEIU Local 1021 and SEIU USWW, AFSCME Local 3299, AFT Local 2121, UESF and UAW Local 2865 all took part in the sit-in inside DA O'Malley's office.

click to enlarge DARWIN BONDGRAHAM
  • Darwin BondGraham


click to enlarge SEIU 1021 organizer Millie Cleveland. - DARWIN BONDGRAHAM
  • Darwin BondGraham
  • SEIU 1021 organizer Millie Cleveland.

click to enlarge Inside the office of Alameda County District Attorney O'Malley. - DARWIN BONDGRAHAM
  • Darwin BondGraham
  • Inside the office of Alameda County District Attorney O'Malley.

click to enlarge Members of the Black Friday 14 outside DA O'Malley's office today. - DARWIN BONDGRAHAM
  • Darwin BondGraham
  • Members of the Black Friday 14 outside DA O'Malley's office today.

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