Company Closing Facility, Endangering Staff in Spite of Socially Conscious Brand
Press Contact: Matt McQuaid Phone: (202) 624-6877 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
(SAN JOSE, Calif.) – Amy’s Kitchen workers and their allies – including UNITE HERE Local 19, the Food Empowerment Project and Teamsters Local 665, rallied outside of the company’s San Jose location today. The company announced plans to close the facility amidst a union organizing drive at the plant with UNITE HERE.
“In the last few months, Amy’s Kitchen workers organized work actions to demand respect and justice on the job,” said Tho Do, UNITE HERE Northern California Organizing Director. “They were met with captive audience meetings, threats, intimidation and retaliation from management. The closure of this facility is part of the company’s overall campaign orchestrated against its workers.”
“My coworkers and I are completely shocked at the closure,” said Ruby Luna, a worker at the San Jose facility. “We were lied to until the last minute. An hour after we clocked in, we were told our jobs were gone. Amy’s claims we are their family, but no one treats their families this way. We are asking the public to demand that the company meet with our union to address our concerns and the devastating impact to our lives.”
“What Amy’s Kitchen has done is disgraceful,” said Lauren Ornelas, Founder and Executive Director of the Food Empowerment Project. “It has not only cost the livelihoods of those in our community – 300 – but has done permanent damage to their reputation. They have seemingly violated the principals they started the company on because they have proven that they do not care about true sustainability when it comes to those who work for them.”
The rally also comes in the wake of a California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (CAL-OSHA) investigation that concluded with the company being fined more than $20,000. Amy’s Kitchen was cited for 13 different safety violations at the Santa Rosa plant, including three violations deemed “serious.”
“Amy’s Kitchen says they are ‘a company that’s uncompromisingly committed to living by our values,’” said Tony Delorio, Local 665 Secretary-Treasurer. “That’s true, but their values are the same as Amazon, ExxonMobil or any other Fortune 500 company: profit at all costs. The egregious disregard for safety, which was verified by CAL-OSHA, is just one more example of their ‘values’ on display.”
Teamsters Local 665 represents over 5,000 members throughout the Bay Area in a wide variety of industries. For more information, go to https://www.teamsters665.org/.