Last week, while immigrant workers fasted on the Capitol’s doorstep, praying for the passage of AB 3216 to give them a light at the end of the long tunnel of 2020, Governor Newsom ignored their calls and vetoed the bill.
AB 3216 would have ensured that hospitality, janitorial and airport workers can return to their jobs when COVID-19 shutdowns end.
The late-night veto of AB 3216 is a huge disappointment to the hospitality workers of UNITE HERE, who fought so hard for a right of recall, and to all of us allies who stood with them: from women’s organizations, immigrant rights advocates, grassroots communities, faith leaders, racial justice organizations, and solidarity from unions and workers’ organizations across the state and nation – all the way to the professional sports players of the NFL, MLB and NHL, who all called on Newsom to support hospitality workers and sign the bill.
But now we go onward. If Governor Newsom blocks workers’ rights, we will turn to our cities — many of which have already passed local rights of recall — to community solidarity, and if necessary, to the streets.
To quote Maria Sanchez, one of the courageous hotel workers who fought for AB 3216: “I came to the Capitol with hope in my heart that the Governor would hear my story and stand with me…Instead I see that I will depend on my co-workers so that we can defend ourselves against the power of mega-corporations.”