Two Fridays ago, Comcast Spectacor and the 76ers announced that they’d be paying employees who work at the Wells Fargo Center for a period of time during the Coronavirus crisis. That includes game night staff, ticket takers, ushers, security, and other personnel who fall within the Comcast or Harris Blitzer Sports and Entertainment umbrella.
It leaves a portion of arena workers uncovered, however, the group that works in food and concessions and is employed by Aramark. We contacted Aramark for information regarding these employees and didn’t receive a response.
Fast forward about 12 days and here’s a video and statement from UNITE HERE local 274, which is the union representing the food service workers:
Despite what you may have heard, hundreds of cooks, servers and bartenders at the Wells Fargo Center are going without pay.
— UNITE HERE Philly (@UNITEHEREPhilly) March 25, 2020
Shared in the following tweet, and on the UNITE website, is a letter sent from City Council to executives with the Sixers, Flyers, Eagles, and Phillies, asking them to help out:
Note that council is asking the teams to “work cooperatively” with Aramark, which holds sway in this situation. The Sixers, as we’ve noted before, are a tenant in the Wells Fargo Center and therefore do not have a direct business relationship with Aramark. That would be different for Comcast-Spectacor, which owns the building. I’d assume the arrangement is similar at Citizens Bank Park and Lincoln Financial Field, though the Phillies and Eagles are not in season right now.
If the Flyers and Sixers wanted to be extra benevolent here and score infinite COVID-19 brownie points, they could agree to pay these food service workers, but ultimately Aramark is running the show in that department. I’ll contact them again and see if they have a statement regarding these employees.