Revenge of the Lunch Ladies

Source: Tom Philpott, Mother Jones, May 4, 2012

… The city of Chicago, steered for years by privatization-happy Democrats Richard Daley and now Rahm Emanuel, has been heading down a similar path. Of the 11 new schools the city has built under a $1 billion program since 2006, 9 have no kitchen facilities and serve food based on what the Unite Here union, which organizes Chicago’s cafeteria workers, calls the “frozen food model.” But the workers fought back–and the famously contentious Mayor Emanuel and his education team blinked. In their contract negotiations with the city, the workers won a five-year moratorium on building any new kitchenless schools or converting old ones over to the heat-and-serve model. …. “We did petitions to parents, we did house visits and phone banks to our coworkers, we did our ‘Let’s Cook!’ rally. And I think it was successful.

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