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November 6, 2018 — California General Election
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— Municipal Code AmendmentReferendum —

Local

City of Oakland
Measure Z Referendum - Majority Approval Required

To learn more about measures, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.

Election Results

Passed

116,980 votes yes (76.29%)

36,350 votes no (23.71%)

  • 100% of precincts reporting (275/275).

Shall the measure amending Oakland's Municipal Code to: (1) establish workplace protections and minimum hourly wage of $15 with benefits or $20 without benefits, increasing annually with inflation, for employees of Oakland hotels with 50 or more guest rooms; (2) authorize administrative enforcement of Oakland's employment standards for hotel and non-hotel workers; and (3) create City department to administratively enforce Oakland's employment standards for hotel and non-hotel workers, be adopted?

Financial effect

 

Financial Impact

 

The City of Oakland’s Finance Department estimates the creation of a new department, as proposed by the Measure, would cost the city $2.8 million annually for staffing and operations.

 

Other potential, but currently unquantifiable, impacts may include:

 

·       Future staff salary and benefit cost of living increases;

 

·       Initial and on-going community outreach and education costs around rights and responsibilities.

 

 

 

— Oakland City Auditor Impartial Financial Analysis of Workplace Protection & Department of Workplace and Employment Stand

Arguments FOR

 

I'm just one of the many women who work in Oakland's hotels. We live in fear and shame of hotel guests exposing themselves to us—or worse—when we enter to clean their room or bring their food. It’s embarrassing and humiliating. These hotel guests take away our dignity and threaten our safety, but our managers just tell us to keep quiet; that the guest comes first. This should stop. Hotels should protect the women who work so hard to support our families, And the City of Oakland should protect all workers, and make sure our rights are enforced.

 

Should hotel housekeepers be provided security panic buttons we can use to call for help if we are sexually assaulted or threatened by a hotel guest?

 

If your answer is "Yes", please vote "Yes" on Measure Z.

 

Should hotel housekeepers be protected from the terrible impacts of inhumane workloads?

 

If your answer is "Yes", please vote "Yes" on Measure Z.

 

Should hotel workers receive a living wage so we can keep our homes and take care of our families?

 

If your answer is "Yes", please vote "Yes" on Measure Z.

 

should there bp Department of Workplace and Employment Standards to enforce these policies, as well as Oakland's minimum wage, sick leave policy, and other local standards for all workers in our City?

 

If your answer is "Yes", please vote "Yes" on Measure Z.

 

We wish to thank the more than 26,000 Oakland voters who signed our petitions to put Measure Z on the ballot

 

As hotel housekeepers, immigrants and women of color, we want to live in a community where people care about us. Please vote Yes on Measure Z.

 

s/Irma Perez

 

Oakland hotel housekeeper

 

s/Blanca Smith

 

Oakland hotel server

 

s/Melody Mio Yun Li-Huey
Oakland hotel housekeeper

 

Arguments AGAINST

 

 


Questions pulling our hearts often sound simple and appealing; unfortunately they do not always work or create    good policy. That is the case with Measure Z and the arguments made by its proponents. Although they sound good initially, upon examination, they won't work, and create bad public policy at great expense to the City of Oakland.

Look at the details and impact, and you will see the serious problems it creates for our City.

Why should hotel workers be paid a higher minimum wage than any other worker in Oakland?

Why should we spend more than One Million Dollars for a new wage enforcement department when we already have a Compliance Department and State Agency enforcing wage and labor laws?

Why aren't the most vulnerable housekeepers at smaller hotels in Oakland part of the new wage minimum or panic buttons?

Why should the voters set detailed worker rules for housekeepers instead of the employers and state laws?

We all agree that hotel workers — in fact, all workers — should be treated fairly. Measure Z fails to do that. Rather, it provides specific, preferential rules that do not apply to workers in other employment, or even to many hotel workers, at great cost to the City of Oakland.

  • Vote NO on Measure Z — it costs too much and is not fair.

R. Zachary Wasserman, Oakland citizen, Larry Reid, Oakland City Councilmember

 

Replies to Arguments FOR

 

 

This Measure is misleading and fails to protect the most vulnerable hotel workers and provides a loop hole for the biggest unionized hotels. The Measure will not apply to hotels with less than 50 rooms. Many hotels that are in more dangerous neighborhoods have less than 50 rooms. So workers at some hotels along MacArthur Blvd will not have the protections of panic buttons, work rules or better wages. The Measure also exempts hotels that have bargaining agreements with a union if the hotel and the union agree. Workers at union hotels may be paid less than the minimum wage set forth by this measure and workers may not get the protection of the work rule limitations — which is the case with some workers today at Union hotels under the existing City wide minimum wage ordinance.

 

The work rules that would apply are unreasonable and almost impossible to administer.

 

The Measure also creates a new City Agency — the Department of Workplace and Employment Standards — that could cost an additional million dollars or more and duplicates federal, state and City agencies that already provide protections for workers. This unnecessary department would regulate AIiL businesses inDakland at the expense of tax payers.

 

Worker protections and fair wages are important. This measure achieves neither and at a great cost. We all want to protect workers but this overblown Measure filled with loopholes is the wrong way to do it. Vote No.

 

Oakland Council Membe'r Larry Reid                                                              Zachary Wasserman, Oakland Citizen

 

To see who is funding ballot measures in Oakland, visit Open Disclosure Oakland.

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