As labor organizers attempt to unionize employees of some Brooklyn supermarkets (including Golden Farm on Church Ave, which continues to get a lot of press these days), the New York Times takes a look at how it’s pitting two immigrant groups–mainly Latino workers and Korean business owners–against one another.
According to the story, 25-year-old Julio Rosales, a Honduran who lives in our area, has set his apartment as “a nerve center for organizing” workers around Brooklyn, but it’s noted that:
Rallying support for the union effort has been particularly challenging because most workers are illegal immigrants, some of whom are less willing to speak out for fear of being fired or detained by the authorities.
For the grocers, it’s also been difficult. The executive director of the Korean American Small Business Service Center tells the Times, “We have suffered enough,” referencing past prejudices against Korean greengrocers, which our area was at the center of.
But it’s not just grocery store employees who expressing interest in organizing in attempts to gain fair wages and better working conditions. In another Times story, they note that organizers are trying to work with low-wage employees across many industries. For instance, United NY recently released a report about low-wage workers which notes that car washes, which we have plenty of on CIA, are one of the worst offenders in the abuse of workers’ rights.
United NY is also leading a rally in Union Square on Tuesday, July 24 as part of a national day of action for low-wage workers.
Photo via Local 338’s Facebook page.