CHICAGO — Concession workers at the United Center rallied downtown Wednesday 24 hours before a bargaining session — where if no collective bargaining agreement is reached — they said they are ready to walk off the job.

“We’re just fighting for what we believe is right,” said Jamie O’Neill.

Earlier this month, 98% of workers in ‘Unite Here Local One,’ a union with over 700 member employees, voted in favor of authorizing a strike. Union members said they have been working without a contract for the last three years, and are fighting for a decent living wage and affordable health care.

The company in charge of staffing concessions at the United Center — Levy — said it has offered concessions workers what it feels is a fair and generous package.

“Our full proposal includes health insurance coverage for more of the union’s membership, substantial lowering of qualification requirements, an immediate wage increase, a guaranteed starting hourly rate of at least $20 for non-tipped positions and the addition of a tip guarantee for tipped positions,” said a statement from Levy provided to WGN. “Should a strike occur, Levy will continue to provide food and beverage at United Center events.”

United Here Local One said after surveying their members, nearly half reported needing some sort of government welfare benefits and/or visits to food pantries.

One of the problems employees face working for Levy is that they split time working at the United Center in the winter, then go to work at one of the ballparks in Chicago in the summer — and because of that split — they don’t work enough hours at each location to qualify for health insurance at Levy.

“That’s what we have to do to survive. That’s what we’re trying to make them realize because levy is at the ball parks as well,” O’Neill said. “So, if you have people working year round for you, you need to compensate them.”

Levy said they are prepared to bring in temporary workers and use supervisors to fill in if needed. If a deal isn’t struck Thursday, union leaders said they are ready to walk off the job.

The Chicago Bulls play the Milwaukee Bucks Thursday, Feb. 16, starting at 6:30 p.m.