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Wage theft and complaints of worker retaliation at Ithaca’s beloved community center

In the minds of many, Southside Community Center is one of the most important entities in Ithaca. Though small, it serves as the premier supporter of black culture in Ithaca, highlighted by its celebrations of Juneteenth and its general fostering of the city’s African-American community through education, promotion and celebration.

But within the walls of the legendary building on Plain Street, workers have been lodging complaints for years about their treatment at the hands of Southside’s leadership and management. Among those complaints are allegations of wage theft, discrimination and retaliation that have contributed to frequent turnover in staff and facilitated a culture of mistrust among workers, according to several sources who spoke to the Ithaca Times both on and off the record.

Read more from The Ithaca Times