Mesha Adams’ Story

I’m a team lead at Jamba Juice in the Oakland Airport. I don’t get health benefits or paid time off. Last year I got sick, and I had to just keep working through it because I couldn’t afford to go to the doctor or take time off. The last two days I just had to stay home, and I never got paid for that time. I was in school at the time and I didn’t know how I was going to pay my tuition.

My dream is to be a doctor and give back to my community. My parents didn’t go to college. I came from an impoverished community in LA and it’s important to me to have an education and be self-sustaining. But tuition keeps getting raised, financial aid keeps getting cut, and I have to spend almost half what I make just to pay the rent.

We’re fighting for a fair process to determine if we want to be a union, and not live in fear, not work in fear. Our employers think that because we lack a common voice, they don’t have to pay attention. But now we’re coming together and we’re a force to be reckoned with.