ROC’s Work

To become a member or get involved with the work we do, please attend a regular orientation. New Member Orientations: Every Monday – Friday at 12 noon. Please call the office or email us with the date you expect to attend orientation. Walk-ins are also welcome. If you cannot attend at the following dates and times, please call us at (202) 559-7496.

ROC-DC builds power and voice for restaurant workers in three major ways:

Workplace Justice Campaigns We support restaurant workers in the DC/MD/VA area who face injustice in their restaurant workplace.

In December 2011, workers from the Chevy Chase Capital Grille Restaurant stood up for dignity in their restaurant company and joined ROC-DC in the launching of a campaign to end racial discrimination, wage theft, and other unfair labor practices at their workplace. On January 31st, Capital Grille workers in New York, Chicago, and in the Washington, DC area filed federal litigation against Capital Grille’s parent company Darden for discrimination and wage theft (Click here to see the lawsuit and find out more). Soon after, workers from Capital Grille in Los Angeles and in Miami joined the campaign and added their claim to the litigation.

As part of the campaign, ROC-DC holds weekly actions in support of all Capital Grille workers across the country.

For more information or to join the campaign, contact



Promoting the High Road to Profitability – We partner with responsible restaurant owners in the DC area to promote best management practices. We also partner with them to offer our restaurant worker members with FREE restaurant training and job placement services, to help restaurant workers advance to livable wage jobs in the industry. Dedicated members with at least 10 years of experience in the industry teach our classes at the Colors Hospitality and Opportunities for Workers (CHOW) program.

We offer the following classes: (Next courses start in April 16, 2012)

  • Introduction to Customer Service –  Introduction to Restaurant Customer Service, including Bartending, Fine-Dining Service, Wine, and more, as a first step towards more advanced courses in Bartending and Fine-Dining Service.
  • Introduction to Bartending – Learn basic skills required to become a bartender.
  • Advanced Fine Dining Service – This course is designed to teach the fundamentals necessary to become a fine dinning server from greetings through cocktail and wine service, and appetizer and entrée ordering.
  • English for Restaurant workers – Obtain language skills to obtain good customer service jobs in restaurants.

(*Class time might be subject to change due to training space availability) – For more information or to enroll in one of our FREE classes, contact:

Stephanie Roth (High Road Coordinator) -



Research & Policy work – We have conducted the most comprehensive research available on the local DC area restaurant industry. Our members were trained to conduct more than 500 surveys of their fellow workers. We also conducted more than 30 employer interviews. We published all of this information in our local policy report, Behind the Kitchen Door: Inequality & Opportunity in Washington, DC’s Thriving Restaurant Industry.

The report was featured in the following local media outlets:

NBC Washington

Hola Cuidad! Telemundo 64

WAMU (local NPR)

Washington Post

WTOP 103.5FM

We Love DC

Through this report, our members discovered that one priority issue for restaurant workers in the DC area is amending the 2008 DC Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act to make all employees who serve and prepare food eligible for paid sick days. Join our Policy Committee, which meets every Thursday at 11am!

For more information or to join the Policy Committee, contact: