The independent news organization of Duke University

Duke University Contract Workers United statement to Administration regarding coronavirus crisis

The contract dining workers of Duke University have been ignored and taken for granted for too long. We have worked through snow and hurricane as "essential staff" and now in this time of emergency we are being kept in the dark about Duke's intentions and our livelihoods.  We make three simple demands of Duke that can easily be met by such a wealthy and respected institution.

1. Clear information from Duke University as to their intentions to meet their obligations toward all of the workers, be they employees or contract workers, that make Duke function. This information should be publicly disseminated without delay.

2. Extended Furlough Pay at wages equivalent to what we were making including tips and guaranteeing this wage until regular full service operations are resumed‚including pay during summer break.

3. Automatic reinstatement to our positions upon resumption of regular operations.

We believe these demands are fair and reasonable and that Duke University will not hide behind their contractors and try to absolve themselves of responsibility. They are happy to claim us when touting their status as #1 “Best Colleges for Food in America.” We are confident Duke will step up and do the right thing now to take care of some of the most economically vulnerable members of the Duke community.


Jamal Burns, '21
Annie Yang, Trinity ‘20
Margot Armbruster, '22
David Lee,  '23
Hana Hendi
Miriam Shams-Rainey, ’23
Sanya Kochhar
Nini Lam
Lily Levin, ‘23
Lindsey Shi, ‘22
Crystal Chiu, ‘22
Vivian Shing
Kyra Citron, ‘20
Meghan Hu, '20
Sarah Xu, '22

Editor's note: For more signatures, visit the petition.


Share and discuss “Duke University Contract Workers United statement to Administration regarding coronavirus crisis” on social media.