Dear Brothers Sisters, we work at United Catering Service/Kitchen in Newark, New Jersey. Together with our coworkers we have decided to come together for equality, respect and safety. We are unified. We are organizing a union!
During our time at United we have grown very close to our coworkers. We are like family. We laugh together and we cry together. We take care of each other. We help each other out.
On Wednesday, January 24th we decided to celebrate our unity by sharing leaflets and inspiration in the cafeterias while we were on our breaks. Our coworkers bravely held hands, shared stories, and even prayed together. We know that it is our legal right to celebrate in this way without being interrogated, watched or retaliated against. Our managers did not respect this and instead tried to stop us by pulling many of our friends into the office to question them. In the end, the company suspended 3 of our coworkers- Aldibert, Denise and Fedra. Three brave, respectful and kind people.
These coworkers of ours are hard workers and we all rely on them. Aldibert grew up in Saipan and is a humble person who loves to share with everybody. He will always make you laugh and has a happy attitude. He makes others feel strong. Denise is a very responsible person. She has worked at the company for 27 years. Her assignments always get done without delay. She cares deeply about her coworkers and her family. She was born and raised in Newark. Fedra is from Peru. She helps everyone. If someone needs help with their assignment she will always help them finish. She gives people inspiration. Many of my coworkers go to her for advice. She has a daughter and a husband and loves her family very much. She has a warm and big heart.
We want our coworkers to be back at work as soon as possible. The company still has not told them if they are returning to work. We miss them and their treatment is unfair. We will fight every day and every minute to make sure they come back. In this wait it is so important that we support them. We are asking you to help us raise money for them so they can support their families. Just like all of us, they have bills to pay and months to feed.
We will not stop speaking up and praying together for our equality. Thank you for your time and for donation to our friends who deserve respect. Every donation, no matter how big or small, makes a difference.
Yes we can! Si se puede! Wi nou kapab!
- Sheeon Charles, Maryann Ibidunni and Maria Villarroel