Thursday, June 4, 2009

Non-Union and Union Workers Protest Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce

Activist Call Chamber Actions a “Campaign of Lies” Against the Employee Free Choice Act.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania- About one hundred labor activists had a loud protest that coincided with the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce’s Young Professionals Network meeting a 5:30 p.m. yesterday at the Bellevue Hotel.

The protest was organized by Jobs with Justice, a local community organization, and the Philadelphia Security Officers Union, a start-up independent labor union for security guards.

“We are out here to tell the new members of the Chamber of Commerce to oppose the lies and rhetoric that the organization is spreading about the Employee Free Choice Act.” Says event organizer Eduardo Soriano-Castillo.

The protesters pointed out the Chamber of Commerce President, Mark Schweiker has publicly opposed the Employee Free Choice Act because it would take away the secret ballot election, which the law would not do.

The union supporters chanted, ”Schweiker, no lies. Workers rights no compromise!
Schweiker, it’s not true. We know it and so do you!” to the members of the Chamber of Commerce as the entered the hotel.

“Mr Schweiker should know that his lies affect real people like us.” Says Cecelia Lynch a security guard at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

“If our right to form a union was respected right now, like it will be when we pass the Employee Free Choice Act, then we would be a union,” states Cecelia Lynch.

Cecelia Lynch and her coworkers founded and organized the Philadelphia Security Officers Union at the Museum of Art in 2008 and have signed up a majority of the workers at the facility.

Under the Employee Free Choice Act, they would be able to choose to be recognized as a union upon signing up a majority of the workers or they could also opt to have a National Labor Relations Board supervised election.

Read the KYW report here

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