Sick, yet forced to serve food in Philly eateries

Restaurant chefs and cooks have lots of horror stories.

Two out of three restaurant workers in Philadelphia reported handling food while sick, according to a study released yesterday that is highly critical of the industry. The report, published by the Restaurant Opportunities Center United in conjunction with two other groups, says that 93 percent of restaurant workers do not have paid sick leave, causing many of them to work while they are ill. It also concludes that more than 90 percent of workers lack health benefits, and that there are wage disparities among demographics.

“I think of all employment groups, restaurant workers coming in sick makes the least sense because the danger of spreading it widely is much more likely,” said City Councilman Bill Greenlee, who co-sponsored legislation that would have required most employers to provide paid sick time. The legislation was vetoed by Mayor Michael Nutter.

The restaurant association disagreed with the report, claiming it is an effort to help organize workers.
“This group has formed chapters in other cities and they come out with virtually the same report,” said Patrick Conroy, president and CEO of the Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association.

Yet some workers claim the report is right on target. Jason, a local restaurant worker who declined to give his last name, said he has worked in the industry for 15 years. He said he has never received paid sick days or medical benefits.

Greenlee said he plans to reintroduce the paid sick leave legislation and hopes the report highlights the “unfair” conditions workers face.

Stabbed by an oyster knife

One restaurant worker, who asked that his name be withheld, has worked in the industry for eight years and said employees often are victims of verbal and physical abuse.

“I’ve had people throw things at me, flip my entire work station. I got stabbed in the hand with a oyster knife by an owner,” he said.

The 27-year-old who is currently a line cook said he believes much of the abuse is a result of alcohol and drug abuse.

Most of the incidents, he said, go unreported.

“It’s not behind closed doors, it’s usually in the middle of the kitchen with 15 to 20 people seeing it happen. You don’t really report things like that,” he said. “There’s really no one to report it to. Most restaurants don’t have [human resources].”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

NBA

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.