FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Mass Firings on Broadway Lead Singers to Push Back

by

thumbnail_stradusters

Photo: José Negroni

A group of servers who serenade patrons at Time Square’s Ellen Stardust have now, formed a union with–wait for it–the Wobblies (a nickname for the Industrial Workers of the World).

After they unionized earlier this year as Stardust Family United, the owner, Ken Strum, said, Dream on–and wrecked the lives of over 30 staffers by firing them. Now they are picketing outside the venue weekly while singing old union and railroad songs.  The waitstaff, consisting of aspiring Broadway actors, decided to organize when new policies prohibited them from easily switching shifts to attend auditions.

“We want to be clear that all of our terminations have been for valid reasons,” said Mr. Strum. “They have been perfectly appropriate under federal and labor laws.”

Stardust Family United has filed multiple Unfair Labor Practices with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for violations ranging from threats and intimidation to mass terminations.  An investigation is ongoing.  This all came about when Stardust Family United was referred by the Wobblies to their lawyer, Ben Dictor.

The artists are refusing to accept what’s happened and so they’ve set out to show themselves as the good guys, in hopes of being portrayed that way in the media (the great privilege of having the First Amendment).  And along with a Democratic-led NLRB, organized labor can also sometimes be life’s only recourse for mistreated employees. All the while, workers and sympathizers have been holding sip-ins to voice their concerns.

“Basically, supporters of the movement organized tables of people to go into the restaurant during the dinner rush, to order small and tip big!” said Kristine Bogan, a terminated employee turned picketer. “They chanted and passed out flyers to customers inside, even joining in on the song ‘Union Maid,’ which we often sing now. “

Other locals have started showing up at the venue to manifest their support for the waiters, also known as stardusters.  Activists from the clerical workers’ history-rich OPEIU’s Local 153 literally froze tourists, police officers, and security guards outside of the 1950s-themed diner when they began, rather plainly, to sing Utah Phillips and Pete Seeger songs.  Once all the rallygoers began singing in unison, the people’s history in the lyrics became fervently dramatized as in a Broadway musical.

More articles by:
Weekend Edition
January 19, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Dr. King’s Long Assassination
David Roediger
A House is Not a Hole: (Not) Caring about What Trump Says
George Burchett
How the CIA Tried to Bribe Wilfred Burchett
Mike Whitney
Trump’s Plan B for Syria: Occupation and Intimidation
Michael Hudson – Charles Goodhart
Could/Should Jubilee Debt Cancellations be Reintroduced Today?
Marshall Auerback – Franklin C. Spinney
Boss Tweet’s Generals Already Run the Show
Andrew Levine
Remember, Democrats are Awful Too
James Bovard
Why Ruby Ridge Still Matters
Wilfred Burchett
The Bug Offensive
Brian Cloughley
Now Trump Menaces Pakistan
Ron Jacobs
Whiteness and Working Folks
Jeffrey St. Clair
The Keeper of Crazy Beats: Charlie Haden and Music as a Force of Liberation
Robert Fantina
Palestine and Israeli Recognition
Jan Oberg
The New US Syria “Strategy”, a Recipe For Continued Disaster
ADRIAN KUZMINSKI
The Return of the Repressed
Mel Gurtov
Dubious Partnership: The US and Saudi Arabia
Robert Fisk
The Next Kurdish War Looms on the Horizon
Lawrence Davidson
Contextualizing Sexual Harassment
Jeff Berg
Approaching Day Zero
Karl Grossman
Disaster Island
Thomas S. Harrington
What Nerve! In Catalonia They are Once Again Trying to Swear in the Coalition that Won the Most Votes
Pepe Escobar
Rome: A Eulogy
Robert Hunziker
Will Aliens Save Humanity?
Jonah Raskin
“Can’t Put the Pot Genie Back in the Bottle”: An Interview with CAL NORML’s Dale Gieringer
Stepan Hobza
Beckett, Ionesco, and Trump
Joseph Natoli
The ‘Worlding’ of the Party-less
Julia Stein
The Myths of Housing Policy
George Ochenski
Zinke’s Purge at Interior
Christopher Brauchli
How Trump Killed the Asterisk
Rosemary Mason - Colin Todhunter
Corporate Monopolies Will Accelerate the Globalisation of Bad Food, Poor Health and Environmental Catastrophe
Michael J. Sainato
U.S Prisons Are Ending In-Person Visits, Cutting Down On Reading Books
Michael Barker
Blame Game: Carillion or Capitalism?
Binoy Kampmark
The War on Plastic
Cindy Sheehan – Rick Sterling
Peace Should Be Integral to the Women’s March
Kevin Zeese - Margaret Flowers
No Foreign Bases!
Matthew Stevenson
Into Africa: Across the Boer Heartland to Pretoria
Joe Emersberger
What’s Going On in Ecuador? An Interview With Wladimir Iza
Clark T. Scott
1918, 1968, 2018: From Debs to Trump
Cesar Chelala
Women Pay a Grievous Price in Congo’s Conflict
Michael Welton
Secondly
Robert Koehler
The Wisdom of Mass Salvation
Seth Sandronsky
Misreading Edu-Reform 
Ann Garrison
Full-Spectrum Arrogance: US Bases Span the Globe
Louis Proyect
Morality Tales on the American Malaise: the Films of Rick Alverson
David Yearsley
Winston and Paddington: Marianelli’s Musical Bears
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail