Artists struggle for their art, but they shouldn’t also have to also sacrifice their health. That’s the basic premise behind this weekend’s three-day O+ Festival in San Francisco, where musicians and other artists will perform in exchange for medical, dental, and wellness services at a pop-up clinic at The Center SF art space on Fillmore Street and other offices around town.Read more »
BART was slammed by legislators and its workers on Nov. 7 for refusing to make a key worker safety improvement demanded by state regulators since a 2008 fatality, instead choosing to aggressively defend the "simple approval" process that contributed to two more fatalities on Oct. 19, after which the district finally made the change.Read more »
From the Election Night victory party for opponents of the 8 Washington waterfront luxury condo project, the overwhelming defeat of developer-backed Propositions B and C seemed to go beyond just this project. It sounded and felt like a blow against Mayor Ed Lee's economic policies, the gentrification of the city, and the dominion that developers and power brokers have at City Hall.Read more »
The Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment will hold a hearing in San Francisco tomorrow (Thu/7 at 10am) looking at workplace safety issues in the BART system, one initially prompted by the district’s record of unaddressed safety violations, but which took on special resonance when two BART workers were killed on the tracks on Oct. 19.
Assemblymember Phil Ting called for the hearing back in June, but he postponed it until the district resolved a protracted contract impasse with its three unions that resulted in two four-day strikes this year, with an agreement finally reached two days after the tragedy — and at least partially prompted by it.
Ting told the Guardian that he was motivated by dozens of violations from the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration that the district has received since its last fatality in 2008 — which were highlighted by the unions and reported by us — and the fact that “BART ended up appealing them instead of going to fix them.”
“It’s so unfortunate that we have this tragedy, which will create a greater sense of urgency on this issue,” Ting said, noting that he wants to focus on, “How do we move forward and fix these problems?”
Beyond those safety issues lurk another important issue that we at the Guardian have been raising, but which most journalists have ignored and the district has tried to avoided addressing: Was the district ignoring safety concerns by its unions to train replacement drivers on that ill-fated train, and did its preparations to run limited service during a strike harden its negotiating stance and force the strikes and ultimately the tragedy? Read more »
From tonight’s victory party for opponents of the 8 Washington waterfront luxury condo project, the overwhelming defeat of developer-backed Propositions B&C seemed to go beyond just this project. It sounded and felt like a blow against Mayor Ed Lee’s economic policies, the gentrification of the city, and the dominion that developers and power brokers have at City Hall. Read more »
BART continues to stonewall important questions about whether it was training scab drivers to break the recent strike by its unions when its trainee-driven train killed two workers on Oct. 19 — a stance made possible by the failure of the mainstream media to connect the dots or correct the anti-union bias that characterized its coverage of this long labor impasse.Read more »
It’s been quiet at the polls for today’s election with just a few more hours until they close. Although the Department of Elections predicted a 35 percent turnout, it’s possible that San Francisco could vie for the historic low turnout of just under 23 percent.Read more »