Dartmouth College student workers vote to unionize, petition college for recognition

Last summer, Dartmouth College junior Reyna Santoyo started working for Dartmouth Dining Services, but it wasn’t until the fall term that she started to worry about the job raising her risk of contracting COVID-19.

The line at Novack Cafe in Baker-Berry Library grew increasingly longer. At times — but not always — the cafe used plexiglass barriers to separate workers and patrons. Some days when she came to work, Santoyo found students scanning their own dining cards. Other days she was given the cards to handle.

And then there were the masks.

“Obviously working with food and during the two-hour shift you see so many students and so many who don’t comply with their masks,” Santoyo said during a phone interview Thursday, shortly before she began a two-hour shift at a campus snack bar.

“It’s very stressful, and especially during COVID it feels like you’re not cared for at all by the college,” added Santoyo, a first-generation college student who earned $13 an hour this summer.

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