University of Penn Food Workers to Vote on Teamster Representation
(PHILADELPHIA) – Dining hall employees at Bon Appétit who work at the University of Pennsylvania will vote soon on Teamsters representation. They plan to be unionized so that they can collectively bargain with their employer for fair wages and paid sick days in a written contract.
“For years, I have put my heart and soul and dedication into every effort,” said Kareem Wallace, an organizer and cook for Bon Appétit at Penn’s Falk Dining Commons. “At the end of the day it would be great to feel acknowledged and appreciated by the management.”
“It’s time for us to be heard,” said Troy Harris, a Bon Appétit employee for the past 13 years. “I’ve been working here a long time and my kids are growing. I need to be paid a fair wage in order to support my family.”
Although other employees at the university are unionized, this unit of 15, employed by Bon Appétit, is non-union and is paid below the rate of the wages the unionized employees earn.
“We will work hard to give these employees of Bon Appétit the wages and benefits they deserve,” said John Preston, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 929. “We’ve coordinated with the Penn Students Labor Action Project (SLAP) on this organizing campaign. SLAP has been tremendous in helping us understand the struggles these workers at Bon Appétit have faced, as well as university politics.”
For more information, contact Teamsters Local 929 at (215) 288-1430 and see www.teamsterslocal929.org. Follow SLAP on Facebook: SLAP@Penn and http://pennslap.blogspot.com/.