Worker cooperatives face particular challenges in Illinois

Maria Sandoval took a chance along with four other women from her East Side community.

Sandoval and the others long labored in low wage jobs: Sandoval as a hotel housekeeper, the others as restaurant cooks. So when their local immigrant worker center proposed starting a worker cooperative as a means to independence and self-sufficiency, they jumped at the chance.

“I have worked at different places,” said Sandoval who immigrated from Mexico in 1994. “But wherever I go I noticed that...

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