Democratic front-runners—including former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)—said they might skip next week’s Democratic presidential debate at Loyola Marymount University due to an ongoing labor dispute on campus. In Friday tweets, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sanders, Biden, Andrew Yang, and Mayor Pete Buttigieg said they would not cross the picket line of labor union Unite Here Local 11—which is fighting for a better contract with a food services company used by LMU. “The DNC should find a solution that lives up to our party’s commitment to fight for working people,” Warren wrote. In his own tweet, Biden wrote that a job was “about dignity” and “more than just a paycheck.”
According to The Los Angeles Loyolan, campus food preparers and students recently protested workers’ contracts with Sodexo—the company LMU uses. The protesters reportedly demanded higher wages, among other things. An LMU official told the student newspaper that the “dispute is between Sodexo and its employees” and said the university was not involved in the protest. The union told NBC News that they have been in negotiations with Sodexo since March, but the company “abruptly canceled scheduled contract negotiations last week.” This comes after the Democratic National Committee moved the debate from UCLA to LMU over a labor dispute between a union and the university.