Since her release from prison in 2013, 52-year-old Renee Taylor has worked for ChiFresh Kitchen as one of its five worker-owners. People are increasingly drawn to such a model, given income inequality, corporate consolidation, union-busting and unstable and episodic work. Worker-owners earn an average of $19.67 per hour -- more than $7 higher than in standard businesses. There are now 465 verified, worker-owned coops in the US, up 36 percent since 2013, with about 450 start-ups. “The pandemic lifted up the need for us to ... have infrastructure to meet each other’s needs,” said Camille Kerr, who helped create ChiFresh. “What better way to do it than collectively owned?”

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