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Painters Union files labor complaint alleging Employer violated NLRAct

01.10.12

JANUARY 2011, Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton edition of The Union News

Painters Union files labor complaint alleging Employer violated NLRAct

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

LEHIGH VALLEY, December 23rd- The Painters and Allied Trades International Union (PATIU), District Council 21 filed several labor complaints with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Region Four in Philadelphia alleging a Allentown painting contractor has failed to fund payments stated within the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the two parties.

PATIU members work within the construction trade industry. District Council 21 is affiliated with the Building and Construction Trades Council of the Lehigh Valley labor federation.

The newspaper discovered the labor complaint while reviewing the information and petitions filed at the National Labor Relations Board. The Union News is the only member of the local media that reviews and publishes the information.

According to the ULP, which was reviewed by The Union News, the union alleges Valley Wide Painting and Decorating, 2222 West Columbia Street in Allentown, violated Section 8(a), subsections (1) and (5) of the National Labor Relations Act when the employer failed to make payments to the union stated within the bargaining agreement between District Council 21, for employees working for the painting contractor. PATIU District Council 21 regional office is in Drums, Luzerne County, and their main office is located in Philadelphia.

“Since February of 2011, Valley Wide Painting has not made fund payments as per District Council 21’s Collective Bargaining Agreement.

In or around October of 2011, the Employer, by its representatives, coerced members of the Union to drop their Union membership to go to work with Valley Wide Painting acting as a Non-Union Employer.

Since in around late August to early September 2011, the Employer has been failing to use the Union’s hiring hall as the exclusive referal source as required by the collective bargaining agreement, including failing to contact the hall for workers on the E.R. Steubner job,” states the Unfair Labor Practice complaint.

The union first filed the ULP with the NLRB on November 21st, however the labor complaint was “amended” on November 30th.

PATIU members throughout the Lehigh Valley are members of Local Union 1269. Local 1269 is affiliated with District Council 21.

The ULP was filed on behalf of the Union by Ken Kraft, Business Agent of District Council 21. Mr. Kraft, a Bethlehem resident, was recently successfully elected to serve on the nine member Northampton County Council. He will begin his term in January.

Mr. Kraft is a Democrat, which will be out-numbered on council by Republicans by five-to-four. The Republicans previously held the majority by seven-to-two.

“As a person who believes in community and public service, I look forward to serving the residents of Bethlehem, Hellertown and Hanover as their voice on County Council. I will be a strong advocate for the needs of our region and will always be available to listen to their concerns,” stated Mr. Kraft.

The ULP states Valley Wide Painting and Decorating employs five workers. The employer representative named on the labor complaint to be contacted is Kenin Phelan. His position with the company is not identified on the ULP.

The November 21st complaint alleged Valley Wide Painting refused to furnish District Council 21 with the requested information for collective bargaining. However, the allegation was removed from the November 21st complaint.

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