On July 1, Lackmann Culinary Services took over the cafeteria operations from Sodexho at Pace University. While it is common for contractors to change often in the food service industry, this situation was unusual because Lackmann refused to hire current workers and assume the existing union contract with UNITEHERE Local 100. Workers with up to 26 years of service on the Pace campus were suddenly thrown on the street, and Lackmann was threatening to turn decent jobs at Pace into lousy ones.
The sixty workers fought back, spreading their message throughout the Pace Community in lower Manhattan and Westchester by leafleting dozens of events like concerts, forums, and student orientations. They talked to Pace students, faculty, and staff, who were outraged that the long-time workers who had served them for years were being thrown out on the street. Dozens of religious leaders expressed their support by signing an open letter to Lackmann and Pace, and elected officials cancelled events that had been scheduled at Pace and demanded that Lackmann and Pace resolve the situation quickly and fairly. Thanks to the resolve of the Local 100 members and the support of elected officials, clergy, and the university community, Lackmann has agreed with the Union that the cafeteria workers will return to the jobs they have held for years, with their wages and benefits intact, and their union stronger than ever.