On March 1, lunchroom workers at Noble Street Charter School employed by Chartwells ratified their first union contract covering 63 workers. While the city was closing public schools, laying off thousands of workers with union jobs, and expanding charter schools in which lunchroom jobs are non-union, Noble lunchroom workers joined the union last August in an effort to improve standards for lunchroom workers. Noble lunchroom workers join the 3,000 union lunchroom workers at Chicago Public Schools.
The three-year contract provides sick days for every employee, affordable health care which is free for individuals and only $85 a month for families, and wage increases. Additionally, the contract establishes a joint labor-management committee to ensure that everyone’s rights are respected in the workplace and handle operational issues.