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STARDUST FAMILY UNITED Press Release
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 02:30 pm EDT 07/17/17

Stardust Takes Aim at Former Singing Servers

After facing multiple counts of gross legal misconduct, restaurant owner Ken Sturm has lashed out at several of his former employees in a callous and spiteful last-ditch attempt to save face during a heated labor dispute. Last September, Ellen’s Stardust Diner began a mass firing of its long term employees after the famed singing waitstaff publicly announced the establishment of their worker’s union, Stardust Family United. Recently, the New York Post published allegations from Ken Sturm, part-time owner of Ellen’s Stardust Diner, that the terminated servers in question were not fired in retaliation for union activity, but rather for their participation in an alleged theft scandal.

Theft is a predictably common allegation made towards restaurant employees during union campaigns, used as an attempt to discredit the employees and their grievances in the workplace. The fact of the matter is, dozens of workers were abruptly fired after publicly announcing the formation of Stardust Family United. Every single employee who was terminated on the questionable grounds of “theft” was an official and public union member.

Ken Sturm presented his “evidence” of alleged misconduct to both the National Labor Relations Board and the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board. Three judges found the employer had no evidence of theft, and have unanimously acted on behalf of the servers who were wrongfully terminated thus far. In some cases, the company withdrew their appeal against the fired servers. The NLRB has filed a complaint and is prosecuting the diner. The charges against the diner can be seen below.

It is the firm belief of both Stardust Family United and their legal representatives that these allegations are nothing more than a desperate retaliation against lawful union activity. Ken Sturm is currently facing a massive class-action lawsuit comprised of over eighty servers who have worked at the diner over the past six years, on the grounds of multiple forms of wage theft.

Stardust Family United, a branch of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), continues to fight for lawful and fair treatment in the workplace for all employees, while upper management continues to disparage the names of long-term workers who have provided the diner with years of faithful service.

For more information regarding this ongoing labor dispute, visit stardustfamilyunited.com or facebook.com/stardustfamilyunited


* In or about January 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by promulgating and since maintaining an overly-broad confidentiality policy.

* On or about May 18, 2016, the Employer, by Joey Simons, violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by imposing restrictions on Facebook communications among employees.

* On or about August 24, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by discharging Kristen Plati because she engaged in protected concerted activities.

* On or about August 26, 2016, the Employer, by Joey Simons, violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by interrogating employees about their Union activities and implying that employees would lose their jobs if they did not provide information about their union activities.

* On or about August 26, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by removing employee access to messaging capabilities on the HotSchedules software platform.

* On or about August 28, 2016, the Employer, by Glen Young, violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by telling employees that they cannot distribute pro-Union literature in the locker room hallway.

* On or about September 3, 2016, the Employer, by Ken Sturm and Glen Young, violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by engaging in surveillance of Union activities.

* On or about September 3, 2016, the Employer, by Keith Peraino, violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by threatening to sue employees if they made or retained an audio recording of a captive audience meeting about unionization.

* In or about the first week of September 2016, the Employer, by Mehedi Gassama, violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act by circulating among employees, and soliciting employees to sign, a petition to remove the Union as the employees’ representative.

* On or about September 13, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act by discharging employees Kristine Bogan, David Colbert, Bianca Disarro, Megan Doherty, Kenton Fridley and Jenna Miller because they engaged in protected concerted and Union activities.

* On or about September 14, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act by discharging Zechariah Azazi, Abby Burke, Sinclair Mitchell and Eric Rodet because they engaged in protected concerted and Union activities.

* On or about September 15, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act by discharging Sonny Black and Kevin Ray because they engaged in protected concerted and Union activities.

* On or about September 16, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act by discharging Grace Wall because she engaged in protected concerted and Union activities.

* On or about September 20, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act by discharging Eric Englehardt because he engaged in protected concerted and Union activities.

* On or about September 21, 2016, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act by discharging Matilda Heenehan because she engaged in protected concerted and Union activities.

* On or about January 17, 2017, the Employer violated Section 8(a)(1) and (3) of the Act by discharging employees Lacey Angerosa, Amanda Brasher, James Cargill, Michael Cunningham, Max Demers, Lisa Kranz, Tara Minogue, Matt Patterson, Chris Ian Sanchez, Erika Santosuosso, Annie Frasier Thomas, John Thyen, Nyseli Vega and Darcy Wright because they engaged in protected concerted and Union activities

www.stardustfamilyunited.com
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