With the unknown changes coming in the new presidential administration, restaurants are stepping up to help their employees.

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Restaurants Are Becoming Sanctuaries for Immigrant Employees

Sanctuary restaurants are like sanctuary cities: They are safe places for undocumented immigrants to find work

The coming presidential administration has made no bones about tougher immigration policies. Phrases like “building a wall” and “Muslim registration” have created a fearful atmosphere for immigrant workers. So the restaurant industry, which often relies on foreign-born employees, is stepping up.

A restaurant sanctuary movement has spread across the nation. Much like sanctuary cities, restaurants are pledging to “protect restaurant workers of all creeds, sexual orientation and immigration status” in the face of any strict Trump administration policies.

Members who sign up here pledge to disavow harassment of any kind and place a prominent “SANCTUARY RESTAURANTS: A Place At the Table for Everyone” sign in their restaurants, as well as participate in support networking that could help undocumented workers stay in the country.

“Our position is one of affirming our openness as a business and our need for all people to come and be a part of what we’re doing and sort of to show that divisive rhetoric doesn’t have a place in our businesses and that fundamentally it’s our job to set the tone and include all people who work here,” Leah Campbell, human resources and communications director of the Brooklyn eatery, Diner, told Kings County Politics.

A list of participating restaurants is available via the Restaurants Opportunities Centers United non-profit. The list includes Colors in Detroit, Honey Butter Fried Chicken in Chicago, The Green Table at Chelsea Market in New York City, and Zingerman’s restaurants in Ann Arbor, Michigan. 

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