The Cuban Corn Crisis on Prince Street

Posted on: February 17th, 2017 at 9:55 am by

cafe-habana-prince-protest

The corner of Prince and Elizabeth Streets was noticeably quiet yesterday as Cafe Habana’s lunch patrons were met with a locked door instead of the trendy cafe’s signature Cuban grilled corn.

Throughout the day, would-be patrons who normally loiter outside while waiting for tables or chomping down on corn, appeared confused at the closure. That is, until they noticed the small heart-shaped sign in the glass door notifying them that Cafe Habana was closed in “solidarity” with the Latino community as part of the nation-wide “Day Without Immigrants” protest which called on Latinos and other immigrant groups to go on strike from work, skip school, and boycott shopping for the day.

But hungry patrons didn’t seem that put off by the closure. Instead, they took pics to post on Instagram or Twitter, while others simply went across the street to Oficina Latina, a Latin influenced bistro, which was open. Chipotle and other fast-food joints in the area appeared unaffected by the protest.

Cafe Habana and Habana To-Go are just two of many restaurants in the city that closed in support of the nation-wide protest that hopes to raise awareness of the important contribution of immigrant workers in the restaurant industry. The strike also comes in response to the increased crackdown on illegal immigrants at the hands of ICE agents since the Trump administration took office less than a month ago.

Since its inception, Cafe Habana has consistently employed workers from the Dominican community of the Lower East Side as well as other immigrants from the city’s dwindling minority neighborhoods.

Recent Stories

Services Now Offered to Chinatown Seniors at Confucius Plaza

A new retirement community program is headed to Confucius Plaza on the Bowery. Earlier this week, Councilwoman Margaret Chin joined Confucius Plaza Management, Hamilton-Madison House staff, and local seniors at the 44-year-old complex to unveil the new Naturally Occurring Retirement Community (NORC) entity. The facility is aptly named The Joy Peace Center, and offers social […]

At 60% Occupancy, 196 Orchard Taps LES Gallerist for Revolving Lobby Art

The synergy between high-end condos and galleries is on full display at Ben Shaoul’s Lower East Side condoplex. It is here, in the lobby of 196 Orchard Street, that local gallerist Lesley Heller has been tapped to curate a revolving placement of art. The residency began this week. Heller – who runs her eponymous showroom […]

Sunshine Cinema Office Development Hit with Stop-Work Order over Excavation

The city halted construction on the commercial office development set to replace the former Sunshine Cinema. Just before the Thanksgiving holiday, Department of Buildings deployed inspectors to the project site and subsequently issued a full stop-work order due to excavation activities. Public records show that “foundation work with excavators” caused “structural cracks” in both the […]

Claw Money Closes Delancey Street Boutique

Street artist Claw Money recently closed down her Delancey Street store. Now encased in plywood shed, the space is undergoing renovation. And joins the litter of other commercial vacancies at 101 Delancey. Indeed, the handful of divided storefronts comprising 101 Delancey went under the knife nearly a decade ago, and largely remained dormant. Except for […]

Happy Ending for the Good Luck Spa as it Reopens on Orchard Street

The good luck is back, as the Chinatown spa of same just reopened. You’ll recall that the Good Luck Spa on Orchard Street fell victim to a police sting last month, and was busted for prostitution. The proverbial happy ending treatment for customers. The business only remained closed for a minute, and was back at […]