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Tue Dec 18, 2012, 06:24 PM

Labor leaders claim New Orleans school lunch provider illegally pressuring workers to keep union out

It might put a bad taste in your mouth: A New Orleans schools food service provider is being accused of union-busting. The Service Employees International Union Local 21 Louisiana filed three complaints Friday with the National Labor Review Board charging that Revolution Foods is illegally pressuring workers to keep the union out. Because of the complaints, the board decided Tuesday to indefinitely postpone an election to join SEIU that had been scheduled for Wednesday.

According to the filing documents provided by SEIU, Revolution fired three workers for supporting the union, held a meeting promising workers higher wages if they stayed non-union, flew in top executives as an intimidation technique and surveilled employees who spoke with union reps.

The California-based Revolution is a recent addition in the New Orleans school food world. The company opened a production facility in Kenner this summer that employs 72 people to serve 17 schools.

"Revolution is going around telling a lot of workers not to vote for the union," said Joshua James, who said the company fired him because he was depicted in a flyer featuring pro-union workers that SEIU sent to management. "A lot of workers are terrified about losing their jobs."


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