Bringing The World Home To You

© 2023 WUNC North Carolina Public Radio
120 Friday Center Dr
Chapel Hill, NC 27517
919.445.9150 | 800.962.9862
91.5 Chapel Hill 88.9 Manteo 90.9 Rocky Mount 91.1 Welcome 91.9 Fayetteville 90.5 Buxton 94.1 Lumberton 99.9 Southern Pines
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Undocumented Workers: The New Labor Movement?

The new documentary “The Hand That Feeds” follows a group of undocumented immigrants who work at the Manhattan deli chain Hot & Crusty.

Because of their immigration status, these employees are taken advantage of. Many are working seven days a week without a break and making less than minimum wage.

The film follows the workers in their struggle to organize their own union. It’s a story that shows how despite the decline of labor union membership, new kinds of worker groups are forming.

These nontraditional labor groups are demanding better wages and benefits, and sometimes they’re succeeding. The film’s director, Rachel Lears, and one of the workers featured in the documentary, Mahoma Lopez, speak with Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson.



  • Rachel Lears, director of “The Hand That Feeds.”
  • Mahoma Lopez, deli worker and member of Hot and Crusty Workers Association.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit

Rachel Lears is director of "The Hand That Feeds." (Courtesy)
Rachel Lears is director of "The Hand That Feeds." (Courtesy)