The Oberlin Review

Bon Appétit Falls Short on Promises, Disrespects Workers

Caitlin Kelley, Michael Kennedy, Eliza Guinn, Dylan Palmer, and Mirella Gruesser-Smith

May 11, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

Editors Note: The following letter is a petition for Oberlin College to terminate its contract with Bon Appétit and to hire its own managers to run CDS. At the bottom of the letter, there will be a link to the petition and a link to personal accounts of current and former CDS workers. All of us at Oberlin, whether we are students, professors, staff, or administrators, have the same goal: making Oberlin College the best it can be. But the management of Oberlin dining services is not the best it can be. We call on Oberlin to adopt self-management to properly manage Campus Dining Services, improve the dining experience, and reduce wasteful spending. WHAT IS SELF-MANAGEMENT? Oberlin College followed a national trend...

CDS Self-Management Would Improve Accountability, Sustainability

Michael Kennedy

May 11, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

From a student perspective, it appears that Oberlin College’s Campus Dining Services model has been failing. The closure of the Rathskeller as a meal option in spring of 2017, the limitation of meal options for the class of 2021, the upcoming closure of Dascomb Dining Hall, and the planned closure of DeCafé’s popular sandwich deli line all support this conclusion. I believe that students have legitimate reasons to be upset by dining changes, but they are not the ones most impacted by these decisions. As a result of the planned changes, employees will be losing their jobs, and many others are considering quitting rather than working at Stevenson Dining Hall. Both Bon Appétit Management Company and the College h...

College Must Include Staff Input During Restructuring Process

Michael Kennedy

April 13, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

As co-chair and former treasurer of Oberlin’s Student Labor Action Coalition, I have met regularly with representatives from Oberlin’s United Auto Workers and Oberlin College Office and Professional Employees unions to learn about issues facing workers and college-union relations. Over the course of this school year, I have engaged in hours of conversations with many employees — from administrative assistants to Campus Dining Services workers to custodians. Every single discussion I have had with a staff member has greatly expanded my understanding of this institution and its faults. Ever since President Carmen Ambar announced to students that Dascomb Dining Hall was to close, I’ve been confronted with the questi...

SLAC Calls for Worker Self-Management in Dining Services

Jeeva Muhil, Eliza Guinn, Michael Kennedy, Student Labor Action Coalition

May 5, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Broader Context: Since May Day is a national day of action for labor rights in the U.S., members of the Student Labor Action Coalition and other interested students chose May 1 to make a stand for workers’ rights on campus. We wanted to both make a statement on campus while also recognizing the increasing attacks on labor that have continued for decades. The Trump administration’s nomination of Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta and its targeting of immigrant and specifically non-white workers further emphasize the need for solidarity within the labor movement both in Northeastern Ohio and nationwide. Historically, the labor movement has privileged exclusively white men over the rest of the ...

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