Skyline of Richmond, Virginia

Painters Union members picket Lackawanna College

05.17.09

May 2009 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

Painters Union members picket Lackawanna College

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

SCRANTON, April 17th- Members of the Painters and Allied Trades International Union Local 218 conducted informational picketing in front of the Lackawanna College Student Activities Center on Jefferson Avenue in Scranton on May 1st and May 4th protesting the hiring of a nonunion contractor by the school to renovate the facility.

According to Robert Griffiths, Business Representative of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 21, as many as five of his members could have been hired if Lackawanna College employed a union contractor. Mr. Griffiths stated the project involve funds provided by the state and/or federal government and workers should be paid wages covered under the Prevailing Wage Act. He participated in picketing the center and stated the union is investigating into whether workers of the nonunion contractor were being paid the wages required under the legislation.

There are union workers employed on the renovation project including members of the Sheet Metal Workers International Union Local 44, which would not cross the picket line of the Painters Union on May 1st. Local 44 members are installing new duck vents throughout the facility. Because of the refusal of the Sheet Metal Workers members to cross the picket line, the daily renovation construction was halted.

The protest included a ten foot high inflatable rat with Lackawanna College President Ray Angeli name posted on the front.

According to John Gatto, Assistant Business Manager of District Council 21, members of the union have ratified a new contract with the association of signatory contractors. The term of the agreement began on May 1st, 2009 and will expire on April 30th, 2012. Mr. Gatto stated the members will receive approximately a five percent increase in wages and/or benefits each year over the term of the agreement.

Mr. Gatto told the newspaper only four hours of negotiations were necessary between the parties before the agreement on a new pact was reached. District Council 21 has 325 active members throughout Eastern Pennsylvania including Lackawanna and Luzerne Counties. The union represents painters, and drywallers.

No comments so far



Leave a comment
Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>

(required)

(required but not displayed)