A year after the singing wait staff at Ellen’s Stardust Diner unionized with Industrial Workers of the World to improve working conditions at the Times Square institution, the union representing employees has announced that it has reached an agreement with the diner’s owners.
According to a release issued by Stardust Family United—the union representing the diner’s singing staff—all 31 employees who were terminated over the past year in retaliation for union activity will be offered full and immediate reinstatement and will receive back-pay from the time they were fired.
At this time, 13 of the fired individuals plan to immediately return to work at the diner.
As previously reported by Playbill.com, the singing wait staff at Ellen’s unionized with Industrial Workers of the World in August 2016, citing unfair and sometimes unsafe working conditions.
The action resulted in a bitter stand-off between employees and Ken Sturm, the owner of the diner, who fired some 31 long-term employees over the past year. Last March the National Labor Relations Board authorized the issuing of a Complaint against Stardust owners for multiple violations of federal labor law, including dozens of retaliatory and unlawful terminations.
The settlement agreement also requires Stardust owners to mail official notices to all employees, informing them that the company will not violate federal law by engaging in certain unlawful practices such as surveilling and threatening workers, interfering with their use of social media, and discouraging them from taking action to improve working conditions.