Penn State Chipotle Workers Strike, Citing “Sweatshop Conditions”


Penn State’s Chipotle closed yesterday after a few employees quit, citing “borderline sweatshop conditions” at the State College location. Penn State’s Chipotle is a very popular food spot in the town, often having lines that fill up the entire restaurant.

An angry letter was posted to the Chipotle door during the close reading:

“Want to know why we’re closed?

Ask our corporate offices why their employees are forced to work in borderline sweatshop conditions.

Almost the entire management and crew have resigned.

People > Profits

Trend it, help spread awareness: #Chipotle #ChipotleSwag”

According to Penn State’s student blog Onward State, former manager Brian Healy said the Chipotle was very understaffed and received no help from their corporate offices, causing workers to have to work 10-12 hour shifts without any breaks to eat. After one of the managers at the Chipotle quit, Healy said that he decided to shut down the store, as he and another manager put the sign in the doorway.

However, around 5:30 p.m. yesterday, the State College Chipotle officially reopened the location. Chipotle ownership responded to Onward State’s inquiry on the strike, stating:

“Thank you for taking the time to write us about our Penn State University restaurant. Unfortunately we had to close this location after a few employees quit, locking out a majority of others who are enthusiastic to return to work. We expect the restaurant to re-open shortly. I’m sorry for any inconveniences this may have caused you. We hope to see you again soon.”

Chipotle Reopens After Afternoon Strike [Onward State]