Morning Lookout: County union’s strike plan; computer science call to action
Good day, dear readers! It’s Tuesday, Dec. 7, and after a little rain overnight we’re expecting a partly cloudy day with highs in the low to mid-60s.
A couple of civic reminders as we get rolling:
- Today is the last day to vote in a special election for Watsonville City Council; get the details here from Lookout’s Grace Stetson.
- Tonight is the second in a series of virtual meetings as Santa Cruz County seeks input on tiny homes; find out more here, also from Grace.
What else do I have for you today? Glad you asked.
- A union representing county employees will announce the results today of a strike authorization vote, Lookout’s Dan Evans writes, with SEIU Local 521 saying that a walkout “could cripple Santa Cruz public services.”
- It’s Computer Science and Information Technology Education Week in county schools, and Lookout’s Hillary Ojeda has a closer look.
- And Lookout’s Wallace Baine talks to Watsonville writer Jaime Cortez about his new book of short stories, “Gordo,” which puts the focus on our local agricultural community.
Let’s dive in:
County union to announce strike authorization vote
After months of discussions and demonstrations, members of SEIU Local 521 said they are inching closer to a strike against Santa Cruz County government. Lookout’s Dan Evans has the background and what’s next.
➤ PREVIOUSLY: County workers protest working conditions, say they are on the edge of a strike (Lookout)
A computer science call to action
The Santa Cruz County Office of Education is bringing a week of activities and guest speakers for the region’s educators, students and families in an effort to encourage young people to learn computer science. Get the details here from Lookout’s Hillary Ojeda.
➤ MORE ON EDUCATION: Get all of Lookout’s K-12 coverage here
Bringing the focus to the fields
Jaime Cortez will talk about his semi-autobiographical book of short stories, “Gordo,” in a virtual conversation with Bookshop Santa Cruz later this week. Lookout’s Wallace Baine catches up with the author here.
➤ MORE FROM WALLACE: Ready or not, ‘We’re the Elders Now’ brings a sense of inevitable reality
Surgeon general warns of emerging youth mental health crisis
With symptoms of depression and anxiety having doubled during the pandemic, the rare public advisory is to call attention to a “youth mental health crisis” and recommend resources to call on and actions to take. Our partners at the Los Angeles Times examine the situation.
In true sustainable fashion, Bay Federal Credit Union partnered with the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary...
California prepares for winter COVID-19 surge
Officials are worried about the new Omicron variant, but the Delta variant is still very much a threat — and state officials want to be prepared for whatever is on the way. The Times maps out what’s ahead.
➤ IN SANTA CRUZ COUNTY: Health officials bracing for impact of Thanksgiving travel, gatherings on local COVID-19 cases (Lookout)
Around the county ...
➤ State parks conducts prescribed burns in Wilder Ranch (Santa Cruz Sentinel)
➤ Watsonville artist’s ‘gift to the community’ resumes after monthlong dispute (The Pajaronian)
➤ These are the best holiday lights in the Bay Area (SFGate)
That’s it for now — but keep it with Lookout all day by bookmarking our website and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. And don’t forget about our Lookout Newsletter & Text Center, where you can sign up for all the newsletters and alerts we offer.
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Have a super Tuesday!
Lookout Santa Cruz