After working for more than eight years at Kenny Bakery in New York’s Washington Heights neighborhood, Moraima Ortiz was fired six months ago for requesting to be paid the minimum wage, an end to physical and verbal abuse, and respect on the job. After she joined the Laundry Workers Center for support, weekly pickets began, though the bosses repeatedly used police to threaten protesters, who chanted “¡Vergonzoso!” (shameful).
On May 12, two police again tried to stop a picket, but LWC organizer Mahoma López and other supporters stood their ground. The police said picketers had to get a permit. Not true, explained López. Then they said the picket could only last for 45 minutes. Finally, after the cops left, the picket resumed for over an hour more.
Support grew for Ortiz as shoppers read the bilingual flier that explained labor violations by Kenny Bakery’s bosses. To demand that Moraima Ortiz get paid for stolen wages (back pay at the minimum wage) and to stand up for workers’ rights, especially women’s rights, call Kenny’s manager Iris Minaya at 212-569-8414.