The mission of the Bay Area Black Worker Center (BABWC) is to eliminate Black poverty by increasing access to quality jobs, by improving the quality of jobs in those industries that employ Black workers, and by reducing employment discrimination against Black workers.
The BABWC develops organized power and authentic grassroots leadership among Black workers (unionized, nonunion, immigrant, formerly incarcerated, youth, and the unemployed) and the extended community. The center’s key strategies are leadership development of workers, research, organizing, and building strategic alliances between the Bay Area labor movement and the Black community. As a result of its activities, the BABWC seeks to promote economic and racial justice, peace, and prosperity for the Bay Area by eliminating poverty
Who We Are
The Bay Area Black Worker Center (BABWC) is dedicated to improving the quality of life in the Black community by organizing around issues affecting the Black community's access to quality jobs and economic justice and dignity.
In 2013, the BABWC was started by a group of Black unionist who wanted to fight for the rights of Black workers here in the Bay Area as part of growing network of Black Worker Centers from around the country.
- We have spoken to over 500 Black residents in the Bay Area about their challenges finding and keeping quality jobs through various outreach efforts and listening sessions
- A majority of the Black folks we reached through out outreach efforts said that being Black and having a criminal record are their biggest barriers to finding and keeping a good job
- In June 2016, we won a campaign that will result in 1400 quality jobs for Alameda County residents who have criminal records as a part of the Justice Reinvestment Coalition. The county program is called the Re-Entry Hiring Program of Alameda County
- As a membership-based organization we continue to bring in new members and to develop new leaders among Black workers who are not only long-time Black unionist but who are also formerly incarcerated, young, and unemployed
- Over the past couple of years we have hosted interns to help train and develop the new generation of young Black organizers as a part of the Movement Activist Apprenticeship Program (MAAP) at the Center for Third World Organizing
- In 2017 we will continue to fight to ensure the county implements the Re-Entry Hiring Program we fought for and won in 2016
- We are currently reaching out to Black Bay Area residents working in Oakland to learn more about their experiences with the recent increase in the Oakland minimum wage
Testimonies from Bay Area Residents
"There is not enough availability in the workforce when you are Black." - Bay Area Resident
" I don't want to settle on a job that doesn't pay me well. " - Bay Area Resident
"We (Black people) need more unity to succeed." - Bay Area Resident