The Bay Area is home to several long standing worker-run cooperatives, and many of these include food businesses such as restaurants, bars, and bakeries. During the pandemic, food businesses were hit especially hard as restaurants had to close, pivot later to takeout only, and wrestle with ever-changing rules around indoor and outdoor dining. At the same time and in an effort to find a more sustainable business model, several coop restaurants opened or converted into a coop in the Bay Area during the pandemic. Vegan Singaporean restaurant Lion Dance Cafe and Reem’s are also in the process of transitioning into worker cooperatives.
“When workers own their places of work, they prioritize worker safety, preserving jobs, paying living wages, and even providing benefits like flexible hours and childcare,” said Julian McKinley, Senior Director of Communications at the Democracy at Work Institute about some positives of worker-run businesses. Particularly for low-wage jobs in essential work forces such as the restaurant and food industry, workers seem to benefit from the coop model. Here are 13 coop food businesses in San Francisco and the East Bay.
Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.Read More