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Oracle Park Concession Workers Call Off Strike As Baseball Playoffs Near

UNITE HERE Local 2.jpg
Flickr / Creative Commons
Members of Oracle Park concession workers union, UNITE HERE, Local 2, at a recent protest.

News of Wednesday’s agreement halted plans for a major strike, authorized by a union vote after more than 20 ballpark food service workers tested positive for COVID-19 in July and August. This decision comes just days before the San Francisco Giants prepare to enter the Major League Baseball post-season.

The new deal between UNITE HERE Local 2, Oracle Park’s concession workers’ union, and Bon Appetit, the food service contractor for the Giants, includes an immediate three-dollars-an-hour pay raise. That’s the first for ballpark workers since 2018, according to SFIST.

Along with an additional raise to seven-dollars-an-hour by 2024, the agreement calls for retroactive hazard pay, increased pension and healthcare benefits, and improved enforcement of mask requirements.

Notably, major COVID-19 safety measures remain in the hands of the San Francisco Giants. The team does not require spectators to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to enter Oracle Park. Masks, however, are required for fans at all concession and merchandise stands.

The labor agreement is expected to pass by formal member vote Thursday and if approved, will run through March 2024.

I am a researcher and writer from Oakland, CA. I cut my teeth in radio at my college station and since graduating, I’ve worked as a paralegal, arts administrator, maritime historian, and most recently, a fellow at WorldAffairs, a global politics radio show and podcast co-produced with KQED. In my work, I am interested in the intersections of race, climate, and labor rights as well as place-based narratives of marginalization and the relationship between local history, public space, and identity formation, especially among queer and BIPOC communities. I am also passionate about drawing on the performing arts—particularly theater and music—to develop interview/storytelling practices grounded in mutual repair and community-building.