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What do I need to know regarding labor actions?

Protesters may not block driveways or deny worker or vehicle access to businesses. 

Protesters may not enter private property. Once asked to leave, noncompliant protesters are subject to citation or arrest for trespassing.

The use of amplified sound requires a permit and is limited to the hours between 10:00 AM and 8:00 PM.

Protesters may not block sidewalks, roadways or impede vehicle traffic.

Protesters may carry signs and/or banners.

Under Penal Code Section 602.1(c)(2), individuals may engage in "protected" activity upon private business property open to the public.  In general, protected activity includes holding rallies, picketing, leafleting, etc., on an employer's private property that is open to the public so long as the conduct is peaceful and does not obstruct the streets and passageways to and from the employer's place of business.

Under the California Constitution, most activities which express ideas in a peaceful non-disruptive manner and are conducted on privately owned property that is open to the public would be regarded as "protected constitutional activities" within the meaning of Penal Code Section 602.1(c)(2).  These activities can include circulating petitions, handing out leaflets, and other forms of free speech activity.

The Berkeley Police Department, however, may arrest individuals engaged in labor or other activities if their conduct constitutes a threat to public safety by becoming threatening or violent, by obstructing free access to the employer's place of business, by obstructing streets and sidewalks, or by constituting conduct in violation of other Penal Code Sections.

An illustration of such a situation could be where strikers or picketers resort to physical violence or threats of violence, harassment, destruction of property, picketing with weapons, blocking access to the employer's place of business, or obstructing streets.  Under such circumstances, local law enforcement agencies are justified in arresting the individuals responsible without violating the aforementioned labor activity exemptions.

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Police Department, 2100 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way, Berkeley, CA 94704
Questions or comments? Email: Phone: (510) 981-5900
(510) 981-CITY/2489 or 311 from any landline in Berkeley
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