Food and Drink

Sandwich shop employees may join a union

Eve Troeh Oct 22, 2010
HTML EMBED:
COPY
Food and Drink

Sandwich shop employees may join a union

Eve Troeh Oct 22, 2010
HTML EMBED:
COPY

TEXT OF STORY

JEREMY HOBSON: Today workers at some Jimmy John’s sandwich shops are voting whether to unionize. If it’s a yes, they’ll become the first U.S. fast food workers to do so. Marketplace’s Eve Troeh reports.


EVE TROEH: Two hundred workers from Jimmy John’s restaurants around Minneapolis will decide if they want to join the International Workers of the World.

MAX SPECKTOR: I am voting yes.

Max Specktor delivers sandwiches by bicycle. He says when business is slow, he’s sent home. So he never knows how much money he’ll make. He says other delivery guys have the same issue, so…

SPECKTOR: Instead of all splitting up and trying to get better jobs we’d just come together and organize.

BEN MCCARTHY:Collective bargaining, I dunno it’s not for me.

Ben McCarthy’s been with Jimmy John’s about four years. He’s a no. He thinks unions are for big companies with better jobs.

MCCARTHY:I don’t think this is a career type job.

Labor historian Nelson Lichtenstein says this vote could start to change that the way unionizing transformed longshoremens’ work decades ago.

NELSON LICHTENSTEIN: This was the work of bums, drunkards, outlaws, etc. Well, longshore work today is the best paid, blue-collar work in America with stead jobs and high pay.

I’m Eve Troeh, for Marketplace.

As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.

Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.

Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.