Chipotle workers are asking their employer to practice what the law preaches.
This week, workers at one locations delivered a petition to their managers to form Workplace Safety Committees as they, according to 32BJ SEIU, continue to deal with less-than-stellar work conditions.
The Chipotle store in question are located at 501 7th Ave.
“It’s past time that Chipotle understands the full cost of their shocking disregard for the health and safety of workers in New York,” stated 32BJ President Kyle Bragg. “It is a lesson 32BJ and our members are happy to provide. Already, we have reminded this fast food giant it cannot ignore hard-won protections like the NY HERO Act. But we won’t stop our fight until this global corporation shows the New Yorkers who keep Chipotle running the respect they deserve.”
Passed in 2021, the NYS Health and Essential Rights Act (or NY HERO ACT) is a mandate for the private sector to provide “extensive” new health and safety conditions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The State Department of Health and the Department of Labor collaborated to come up with several plans that companies can use to deal with airborne infections.
In accordance with the HERO Act, any private employer with at least 10 employees needs to allow their employees the chance to form a labor-management task force that would address work conditions.
Chipotle worker Alyssa Roman, who works at the 620 9th Ave. location, wants her employer to act quickly and abide by the law.
“Management is not protecting us, so we’re taking our health and safety into our own hands using the HERO Act. My health and safety as a pregnant mother doesn’t seem to be a priority. They don’t seem to care when I get sick. We demand that Chipotle honor the HERO Act and respect our rights.”
Earlier this spring, 32BJ SEIU filed a HERO Act complaint on Roman and her other co-workers’ behalf after Chipotle management allegedly ignored their petition to form a Workplace Safety Committee at a Manhattan Chipotle store at 269 Amsterdam Ave.
John Larkin, who works at the 501 7th Ave. location, said if Chipotle higher-ups cared about its workers, they would make sure they worked under the best conditions.
“The conditions at Chipotle are unacceptable,” Larkin said. “I got burned because they won’t fix the broken tools in the kitchen. My efforts to improve the workplace health and safety for myself and co-workers are not being taken seriously. We deliver this petition to form an employee-employer workplace safety committee, which Chipotle has an obligation to honor. We demand respect and safety and dignity on the job.”