Lunch Ladies Persist

Sally E. Bahner PhotoWork with Us!

We are ready to fight!

Lunch Ladies Unite!


The “lunch ladies” were out in force Thursday afternoon in front of the Board of Education offices on Main Street to double down on their request to be employed as part of any new food service contract with the town. Passing cars occasionally honked their horns in support.

They’ve appeared at recent Board of Education meetings to state their case for their continuing employment. Chartwell Food Service employs 22 of them in Branford schools, many with decades of service. They are members of Union Local 217. Click here to read the story. 

Chartwell’s contract with the town is being terminated due to financial losses and bids are being accepted for new suppliers. According to terms of their contract, they must reapply for their jobs.

Sally E. Bahner PhotoAccording to Mary Dyer, one of the lunch ladies, they have offered concessions at the negotiating table in various areas, “so we can keep our jobs.” She said they want Chartwell to return and hope their compromises will make the company’s bid more attractive to the town. She asked that Superintendent Hamlet Hernandez work with them “and our employer”  to implement the contact.

“We want the Board of Education to value our commitment and experience,” said Donna Rispoli.

They have not yet reapplied for their jobs; they’re waiting for the bids to come in and the announcement. Bids are due to the town by May 15.

Hernandez has been out of the office due to the death of his father and not available for comment.


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