Restaurant Organizing Project

The Democratic Socialist Labor Commission has launched a national project to teach chapters how to organize laid off restaurant workers in their area. We’re helping chapters set up local restaurant organizing campaigns that can fight for immediate relief in the short term, and organize around a longer term vision to reshape the entire industry so it works for workers.

The Democratic Socialist Labor Commission or DSLC is the national body in DSA that connects, supports and oversees DSA’s labor work. Restaurant Organizing Project or ROP was started by members of the DSLC (both its steering committee and rank & file) to support chapters as they organize workers during this crisis, and to help chapters grow their strength so they can continue the work once the immediate threat of COVID-19 has passed.

We have a national team of twelve DSLC members from across the country. Currently we are

  • Meeting with chapters to help advise them on how to take up this work. Organize 4 or more members in your chapter and set up a time to meet with us. You can click here to schedule a time.
  • Working on political & economic analysis of the industry so we can push a working class counter-narrative that combats the National Restaurant Association and their bosses’ agenda. Read some of that here.
  • Developing strategies to organize with workers in the longer-term around a vision to restructure the industry. See our latest Restaurant Organizing Project Report here. 
  • Connecting DSA organizers across the country in regular national calls to share ideas, troubleshoot issues and trade strategies.

Upcoming Events

Tuesday, 6/2/2020, 7 PM Eastern/4 PM Pacific:
Understanding the Unemployment Crisis

This call will be on the unemployment crisis, specifically as it is impacting the restaurant industry. Hear from other chapters, and share your own organizing lessons as we sort through the complicated situation of the COVID-19 world.  

Tuesday, 6/16/2020, 7 PM Eastern/4 PM Pacific:
Different Forms of Worker Organizing

Every worker in the food service industry should be in a union. This goal is easier said than done. What are some different forms of organizing that we can use to advance workplace and worker struggle in the industry? We have created a pamphlet that goes through some things to consider that may be useful for discussion.

Tuesday, 6/30/2020, 7 PM Eastern/4 PM Pacific:
Our Vision for the Industry

After the forced closure of restaurants, the industry will be restructured for good. It’s never going back to how it was before. If workers are the ones shaping the industry, how would we structure it? What would it look like? What are our demands?

Printable/Shareable Resources

We regularly produce resources for chapters to use in their organizing work. Please see this folder to see all of the resources we have developed so far. Have a resource to share? Email us at

Helpful Links

Read our Mini Toolkit to learn how your chapter take up this project locally.

Share this intake form with people you know so they can get added to our email list to receive organizing updates and information about national calls.

Organize 4 or more members of your chapter and schedule a call with our Outreach Team here

Get in touch by emailing