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IWW WINS LABOR BOARD RULING - Workers reinstated at Amersino after being fired for joining union.

NY, NY, March 6, 2007 – In a big win for workers in Brooklyn and Queens, the National Labor Relations Board ordered that warehouse owner Henry Wang of Amersino Marketing Group, LLC reinstate Manuel Lopez and Juan Antonio Rodriguez, pay thousands of dollars in back wages, and cease and desist any and all illegal anti-union measures. On February 27, 2007, the Board found that Wang violated two sections of the National Labor Relations Act by firing Lopez and Rodriguez, after they joined the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) union, and by intimidating others who engaged in protected union activity.

“It’s clear that it was discrimination for trying to form a union,” said Rodriguez.

The IWW filed a grievance with the NLRB after five Amersino workers were fired for union activity in April 2006. In addition, seventeen workers at four other restaurant supply warehouses in Brooklyn and Queens were fired for joining the union. Further complaints allege that employers regularly violated minimum wage and overtime laws. Organizers with the IWW’s Food and Allied Workers Union, 460/640, described the Amersino ruling as a clear signal to employers that union busting efforts are a direct assault on the rights of workers, and vowed to keep up the fight.

The organizing drive at E-Z Supply/Sunrise Plus, Amersino, Top City, Giant Big Apple Beer and Handyfat Trading, Inc. has heated up in recent months. More than 200 union members and community activists from Make the Road By Walking marched through Brooklyn and Queens on February 19, 2007 and picketed three warehouses and a supermarket to protest unfair labor practices.

On March 10, 2007, the IWW plans to picket the E-Z Supply/Sunrise Plus warehouse at 48-01 Metropolitan Avenue in Ridgewood, Queens from 8:30 am to 10:30 am (near Grand Street stop on the L train). The U.S. Justice Department will hold a deposition of Sunrise Plus owner Dennis Ho on March 13, 2007 over charges that he illegally applied the Immigration Reform and Control Act to crush IWW union organizing at that workplace.  

The Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) is a rank and file union founded in 1905.  The IWW Food and Allied Workers Union, 460/640, is organizing in the food industry to improve working conditions and win respect on the job.  Members of the union include workers from Starbucks, restaurants, and warehouses.  

Contact:

  • Billy Randel, Industrial Workers of the World
  • NYC General Membership Branch
  • phone: (646) 645-6284
  • email: iww.nyc@gmail.com