Workers’ rights in the news again: Showdown at Eddie Spaghetti

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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A YouTube video taken yesterday shows a protest at Eddie Spaghetti on Hendersonville Road in which an Eddie Spaghetti worker verbally attacked protesters, using profanity and ripping the protest signs from their hands.

According to Mountain Xpress, the protest was staged by local worker’s-rights network Asheville Mutual Aid over working conditions at the restaurant:

According to AMA member Nable Wallin, a former worker came to them claiming that the business “had a generally abusive work environment” and didn’t compensate its workers properly. Two weeks before the protest, AMA presented a list of demands to management.

AMA, which formed earlier this year, is a network of workers and activists that aims to “create a climate in which bosses and landlords think twice before stiffing those under them,” according to its website

Eddie Spaghetti resulted in confrontation today when cook Sasha Jenkinson grabbed the demonstrators’ signs and called them idiots, recorded in a short YouTube video by one of the protesters.

Jenkinson, the worker in the video, had this to say:

“It’s not the best job in the world, but it’s not the worst job in the world,” Jenkinson says. “I’ve got seven kids, they’re threatening my job. Of all the things to protest, they’re protesting this bullcrap.” He notes that the servers paid $8 an hour and get tips in their weekly paychecks.

“They’re standing in front of where I work, taking off my plate,” he adds. “I went out there, grabbed a few of their signs and let them know what they were doing, all they’re doing is threatening a bunch of hard-working people. They’re not changing anything.”

Read the full Mountain Xpress article here.

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1


  1. Mark August 18, 2012

    Restaurant work is frequently exploitative. One gets a restaurant job to move ahead in life. Work your shitty job take it go to school get a professional job. If you feel so motivated to quit build a work history and go to a corporate job with an employee relations department. Best yet take a restaurant job because you enjoy feeding people good food, work at a place you enjoy eating at. If your boss is a turd steal his recipes and start your own business. Big Bill Haywood is turning in his grave right now.

  2. Nate August 17, 2012

    Alleged mistreatment of a single employee who then chose to quit his or her job seems like a pretty flimsy basis for presenting a list of “demands” and then scheduling a public picketing. This sounds like a bunch of underemployed wannabe activists rather than a serious effort by a legitimate organization focused on workers’ rights.

  3. Workah August 16, 2012

    My god, 7 children, and he’s probably not paid (much?) more than the waitstaff. I can see why he’s stressed out.
    Perhaps he could consider that if he joined in the *organizing* effort to demand better treatment and wages, his position would ultimately be stronger? Regardless, I’m glad there is some light being shone on the shoddy conditions people are working under in AVL.


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