Building a world of
resilient communities.

MAIN LIST

 

Hot and Crusty film featured in the New York Times

handthatfeedsimage

A member of the newly formed Hot and Crusty Workers Association celebrates inside the newly opened store. (Jubilee Films)

As the debate over immigration reform continues in Washington, the victory of one group of mostly unauthorized workers is now in the national spotlight — demonstrating a direct-action path that unauthorized workers across the country could adopt to win rights both at work and in broader society.

Robin Blotnick and Rachel Lears’ film “The Hand that Feeds” — featured today in the New York Times Op-Docs series — chronicles the year-long struggle of Mahoma López and his co-workers at Hot and Crusty, a bakery on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

After years of working in unsafe conditions, without overtime or benefits and with paychecks regularly withheld, more than a dozen workers decided enough was enough. They began attending the Occupy Wall Street immigrant worker justice working group, linked up with a newly formed labor association called the Laundry Workers’ Center and filed paperwork with the National Labor Relations Board to form an independent union. But the corporate-owned bakery wasn’t interested in immigrant workers with rights, and the NLRB filing set off an explosive, and ultimately successful, series of pickets, marches, lockouts, workplace takeover and even a worker-run sidewalk café launched on Labor Day.

As Rachel Lears explained in the Times, this struggle extends far beyond Manhattan — or even the low-wage labor movement.

“It’s time we admit it: America runs on the labor of the undocumented,” she wrote. “Their struggle for rights, inside and outside the workplace, is an inseparable part of our democratic project.”

Check out the New York Times Op-Doc video and the film’s site.

What do you think? Leave a comment below.

Sign up for regular Resilience bulletins direct to your email.

Take action!  

Find out more about Community Resilience. See our COMMUNITIES page
Start your own projects. See our RESOURCES page.
Help build resilience. DONATE NOW.

 

This is a community site and the discussion is moderated. The rules in brief: no personal abuse and no climate denial. Complete Guidelines.


Anxiety turns to fear: Markets, energy, Pan and the Zeitgeist

The characteristic feeling of the post-2008 world has been one of anxiety. …

Alternatives to Capitalism

It is said that capitalism believes in competition but hates competitors. …

Own a Home in Just Four Years? This Co-Op Program Keeps Workers in the Neighborhood

Alex Cedeño quit renting two years ago. Now, he has just two years …

Co-operatives Need to Confront Climate Chaos

The challenges for 2015 are the same ones we've failed as a movement to find …

Making Sense of the Sudden Market Plunge

The global deflationary wave we have been tracking since last fall is …

Back to the Future for Work

What if we’re slowly, or not so slowly, giving up on the idea of work?

Why Is Market Fundamentalism So Tenacious?

One of the great economists of the twentieth century had the misfortune of …