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Bay Area Headlines: Monday, 7/20/20, PM

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Bay Area Joins Nation In Strike For Black Lives / CA Fire Update

Bay Area Joins Nation In Strike For Black Lives

Hundreds of workers are rallying today in cities across the U.S. to protest systemic racism and economic inequality. They’re joining a nationwide demonstration demanding improvement of Black Americans' experiences in the workplace.

Organizers hoped the effort would grow into a strike inspiring tens of thousands of people to walk off the job. But visible support has come largely in the form of smaller protests, drawing people whose jobs in health care, transportation and food service do not allow them to work from home during the coronavirus pandemic.

The “Strike for Black Lives” protest was organized by labor unions and social and racial justice organizations, which planned a range of actions in more than two dozen U.S. cities. Where work stoppages were not possible for a full day, participants picketed during a lunch break or observed moments of silence to honor Black lives lost to police violence, organizers said.

About 1,500 janitors in San Francisco walked off their jobs and planned to lead a march to City Hall later in the day, according to Fight for $15 — that’s a labor group that supports raising the U.S. minimum wage to $15 an hour. The group said McDonald’s cooks and cashiers in Los Angeles and nursing home workers in St. Paul were also striking.

Participants in local rallies included delivery men and women, fast food employees, ride-share and airport workers.

CA Fire Update

Authorities are warning of poor air quality in central and northern parts of California, today, due to wildfires in rural areas. The National Weather Service issued a dense smoke advisory for Lassen and parts of Plumas and Sierra counties due to visibility as low as a quarter-mile because of the Hog Fire west of Susanville. An air quality alert was also issued for most of the San Joaquin Valley due to smoke from the Mineral Fire in Fresno County west of Coalinga. The fire has grown to more than 44 square miles and is about half contained. Seven structures have been destroyed and 60 remain threatened. Several smaller fires are burning elsewhere in California as well.