'Twerking Class Heroes': Strippers' Union Takes Off in California

Strippers' unionization a win for democracy, union head says

A group of strippers in California is poised to form the first strippers' union in the United States in a decade.

The owners of a California strip club, the Star Garden Topless Dive Bar in North Hollywood, are expected to begin negotiations with the strippers, who call themselves the "Twerking Class Heroes." The strippers were fired in 2022 after they protested over safety concerns at the club, which closed its doors recently. The last known strippers' union was at a club in San Francisco that shuttered in 2013.

"I’m excited that all of my beautiful coworkers will finally have a seat at the table and a voice to discuss safety and other issues," said Sinder, a dancer at the facility. "This is a big day for us and dancers everywhere."

The "Heroes" will be represented by the show business union Actor’s Equity Association. The owners of the strip club are hoping to reopen within two months after resolving a bankruptcy case.

Kate Shindle, president of the Actors’ Equity Association, said the strippers' unionization represents a victory for democracy.

"I’m thrilled that we’ve won recognition of their rights to safety and democracy in the workplace and representation at the bargaining table," Shindle said.

"Star Garden decided to settle, as it has always been a fair and equal opportunity employer, that respects the rights of its employees," An Nguyen Ruda, attorney for the club, said.

Published under: California , Gavin Newsom