Delbar employees seek better wages, conditions during Inman Park protest

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Protest over unsafe working conditions

A protest in Inman Park takes aim at the management of a popular Middle Easter restaurant. Former and current employees of a Delbar united to express their collective concerns over unsafe working conditions This comes after they say a demand letter sent to the managers last month went unanswered.

If you type Delbar into your search on TikTok, you’ll see 10/10 ratings for service at the Michelin Guide-recommended restaurant that features Persian cuisine. 

Just outside the doors of its Inman Park location Monday evening, current and former servers rated working there a poor experience. 

"Not the greatest, honestly," former server Sheri Razak. "The heat just blindsided me literally, as it does everybody…we’re always dripping in sweat…it’s ridiculous." 

Razak was one of several former employees who gathered outside the restaurant in protest alongside members of the Union of Southern Social Workers to call for better working conditions and higher wages.  

It was the start of a five-day strike after a demand letter sent to Delbar management last month went unanswered. 

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"Organizing always comes out of love, that we want things to be fixed, because we love the people we work around, and we love to serve," she told FOX 5.

The former server who worked at the restaurant for 10 months says she and others endured long shifts without scheduled breaks or working air conditioning. 

"We come in and out of the kitchen as servers, and the heat was so extreme one night my nose just started bleeding… it kept bleeding profusely for 30 minutes," she told FOX 5. 

Madison Tipton currently works as a server assistant at the restaurant. She tells FOX 5 the $5 an hour she makes isn’t enough to cover her bills. 

"They’re dropping millions of dollars on new restaurants. They have all these new restaurants and expenses except for their labor costs," she explained. 

While she’s concerned her participation in the strike may cost her job, she tells FOX 5 it’s a risk worth taking. 

"We’re trying to fight to get paid what we deserve." 

The group is demanding better pay, paid sick time, adequate air conditioning and the ability to unionize. They also hope to spark a larger conversation around poor wages and working conditions in the service industry as a whole. 

FOX 5 made multiple attempts to reach out to officials with Delbar for comment on this. Emails and phone calls were not returned. The strike is anticipated to last for the rest of the week.