North Bay Jobs with Justice participates in May Day--International Workers' Day--event to support Immigrant Rights:
Sonoma County Sheriff restricts cooperation between jail and ICE
By Martin Espinoza
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
May 1, 2017
In a compromise with a watchdog official who had criticized his policies, Sonoma County Sheriff Steve Freitas imposed new restrictions Monday on cooperation between local jail officials and federal immigration agents.
The jail will no longer cooperate with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials in cases where undocumented immigrants are suspected of committing minor offenses, such as driving without a license.
However, the jail will continue to provide ICE with information about undocumented immigrants who are convicted of serious or violent felonies, as well as a number of other crimes listed in the 2013 Trust Act. That law, supported by immigrant rights groups, blocks county jails from holding inmates for immigration officials when they would otherwise be allowed to go free.
“We are trying to come to some type of mutual understanding and we are agreeing to go by the Trust Act,” said Sgt. Spencer Crum, a spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office.
North Bay Jobs with Justice Annual Fundraiser: Connecting Labor & Community
SAVE THE DATE: JUNE 9, 2017
This year, North Bay Jobs with Justice will be honoring the Superior Court workers of
Sonoma County, represented by SEIU 1021, for their incredible dedication to building the
labor movement through their contract campaign and 3-day strike earlier this year.
We will also be honoring community leader and Board President of Centro Laboral de Graton Gervacio Peña for his tremendous work in broadening the scope of how workers' rights are recognized and his dedication to the labor movement.
Keynote speaker will be Maria Elena Durazo, Vice President for Civil Rights, Diversity, and Immigration with UNITE HERE International Union and the Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee.
Please join us on the evening of June 9th to help us celebrate and honor our awardees, and honor the work of Jobs with Justice throughout it's 30-year history. Tickets can be purchased by clicking the link below. Limited tickets will also be available at the door:
Close to Home: Sonoma County Board of Supervisors Should Add Paid Sick Days
By Martin J. Bennett
The Press Democrat, March 31, 2017
Last year, the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approved a $15-an-hour living wage ordinance covering more than 1200 low-wage workers employed by the county, county contractors and firms receiving public subsidies. Affected employees include park aides, landscape, janitorial, recycling, security, mental health and other workers.
A broad coalition of labor, faith, environmental and community organizations proposed a living wage law in 2014 and is now requesting that the board amend and revise the legislation to make it more robust and comparable to ordinances implemented by Santa Clara, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Santa Cruz counties.
Worker’s Rights: Superior Court Workers Report Serious Erosion in Public Access to Legal System
By Bonnie Petty
Sonoma County Gazette, February 1, 2017
Let’s say you have been involved in a court case that has finally come before the Sonoma County Superior Court. But 30 minutes past the time court was to begin, the entire courtroom is still waiting (your attorney’s fees are multiplying) because the court reporter is still in another courtroom. When that trial is over, she will have to pack up her gear and race to your courtroom and set up her gear again.
“Oftentimes I am scheduled in multiple courtrooms in a day and packing up my gear and driving over to another courthouse is considered my break,” says Court Reporter Becki Peterson.
It was only one example of the serious deterioration in working conditions and the subsequent erosion of public access to the legal system at the Sonoma County Superior Court, as related by the workers themselves. On Saturday, January 14th, the North Bay Workers’ Rights Board convened a hearing on the working conditions of those court workers, which they requested as a result of the administrators’ failure to respond to their multiple requests for redress.