A DC area restaurant has the name “union” written all over it. And now workers are making sure it really is union.
“Roughly 50 retail workers across five of Union Kitchen’s six stores appear to have formed a union.
The National Labor Relations Board determined Tuesday that a majority of Union Kitchen workers voted to unionize, according to the freshly-minted labor union’s collective bargaining agent, United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 400. The NLRB reviewed the results of the formal election, which took place three months ago, after CEO and founder Cullen Gilchrist challenged some ballots — including those of two vocally pro-union workers who cast ballots but were fired before their votes had been counted.
NLRB press secretary Kayla Blado confirmed that a majority of valid votes cast had been in favor of the union, 20 to 11. Barring no new objections, Blado says certification will happen by June 29.
The announcement underscores the determination workers have to organize, with many new unions forming across the region — most recently an Apple store in Baltimore — in spite of the variety of obstacles they face.
Union Kitchen’s contract negotiations are expected to be contentious, considering how challenging forming the union was. Workers faced great opposition from Gilchrist ever since they went public with their union drive in late January. They’ve accused him of union-busting and filed multiple unfair labor practice claims with the NLRB.”
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