Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Play

Nashville mourns six dead in the latest mass shooting, the EPA takes public input on a proposal to clean up Pennsylvania's drinking water, and find ways to get more Zzz's during Sleep Awareness Month.

Play

A shooting leaves six dead at a school in Nashville, the White House commends Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to pause judicial reform, and mayors question the reach of state and federal authorities over local decisions.

Play

Finding childcare is a struggle everywhere, prompting North Carolina's Transylvania County to try a new approach. Maine is slowly building-out broadband access, but disagreements remain over whether local versus national companies should get the contracts, and specialty apps like "Farmers Dating" help those in small communities connect online.

PA Groups Join Call to Action for Congress to Support Restaurant Workers

Play

Wednesday, October 26, 2022   

Food-service workers in Pennsylvania and their advocates want Congress to consider and support a new "Restaurant Workers Bill of Rights." The document calls for livable wages, better working conditions and access to health care for restaurant workers.

Sammy Chavin, federal policy coordinator with the group Family Values @ Work, a movement of more than 2,000 organizations in 27 states, including the Pennsylvania chapter, said during the pandemic, more than 30 million workers lacked access to any paid sick time, and introducing a Restaurant Workers' Bill of Rights in Congress could help change it.

"The Restaurant Workers' Bill of Rights will ensure that all restaurant workers will be entitled to time to rest, time to heal, and time to live with the security of continued income and a job to come back to," Chavin asserted. "We can create a world with an economy based on care, equity, and respect."

She added months of outreach to restaurant workers across the U.S. helped determine what went into the document. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, close to 400,000 people work in food-service in Pennsylvania.

Debbie Ricks, now living in Washington, D.C., worked in restaurants for nearly 10 years. She said during the pandemic, she lost her job after taking a month off to deal with family matters. She believes if a "Bill of Rights" had been in place, it would have allowed her to take paid time off.

"The Restaurant Workers' Bill of Rights, it will establish a relationship between employee and employer and define the rights of the worker," Ricks contended. "My hope is that this Bill of Rights will alleviate the mental stress that comes with navigating the restaurant industry."

Sekou Siby, president and CEO of Restaurant Opportunities Centers United and ROC Action, which conducted a national survey of workers in the industry, said food-service workers were greatly affected by the pandemic, and need more protections.

"The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated structural issues that restaurant workers have been facing," Siby observed. "According to our study, that included responses from more than 1,000 restaurant workers, 85% of them experienced wage loss; 91% have received no compensation for working in hazardous conditions."

Siby added improving conditions is also a matter of employee retention. Some 60% of restaurant workers in the survey said since the pandemic, they've looked for work outside the industry.

Disclosure: Restaurant Opportunities Center United contributes to our fund for reporting on Civil Rights, Human Rights/Racial Justice, Livable Wages/Working Families, and Social Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
Black Americans are the most likely to suffer from insufficient sleep. (ChadBridwell/Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

March is Sleep Awareness Month and health experts say Americans are not getting enough of it. United Health Foundation data found more than 32% of …


Environment

Environmental groups are seeking greater input as California puts the finishing touches on its application to become a hub for hydrogen fuel productio…

Social Issues

This month marks 160 years since the first Medal of Honor was awarded by President Abraham Lincoln. More than a dozen of the 65 recipients alive …


According to The Medal of Honor Museum and Foundation, 3,514 men and one woman have won the Medal of Honor in service of their country from the Civil War to the present day. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

160 years ago, Civil War soldiers were awarded the first Medals of Honor. Now, a Medal of Honor Monument will soon be built on the National Mall in …

Social Issues

The meat processing industry continues to face scrutiny over labor practices in states like Minnesota. Proposed legislation would update a 2007 law…

A report published in late February says children of mothers who are abused or neglected were more likely to demonstrate symptoms and behaviors linked to depression, along with other health issues. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

New findings suggest health effects stemming from child maltreatment can be passed on to the next generation. In South Dakota, leaders in early-…

Environment

One Arizona mayor is among the more than 2,800 elected city officials in Washington, D.C., this week for The National League of Cities' Congressional …

Environment

Congress is considering three bills that would sidestep the Endangered Species Act to de-list the Northern Continental Divide and Yellowstone grizzly …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021