Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Labor Union Outsourcing Jobs...

If you are walking in downtown DC you might hear:
"What do we want? Fair wages. When do we want them? Now."

And you might notice that the placards read:
"Mid-Atlantic Regional Council of Carpenters"

And then you might notice the giant bags of worldly possessions. hey wait, these aren't carpenters...these are homeless people recruited and hired to picket for $8.

"...They're hired feet, or, as the union calls them, temporary workers, paid $8 an hour to picket. Many were recruited from homeless shelters or transitional houses. Several have recently been released from prison. Others are between jobs.

"It's about the cash," said Tina Shaw, 44, who lives in a House of Ruth women's shelter and has walked the line at various sites. "We're against low wages, but I'm here for the cash."

Carpenters locals across the country are outsourcing their picket lines, hiring the homeless, students, retirees and day laborers to get their message across. Larry Hujo, a spokesman for the Indiana-Kentucky Regional Council of Carpenters, calls it a "shift in the paradigm" of picketing...

The carpenters union is one of the most active picketers in the District, routinely staging as many as eight picket lines a day at buildings where construction or renovation work is being done without union labor.

Supporters of the practice consider it a creative tactic in an era of declining union membership and clout. But critics say the reliance on nonunion members -- who are paid $1 above minimum wage and receive no benefits -- diminishes the impact and undercuts a principle established over decades of union struggles.
" (Read the entire article)

Hey, I get it...with all the breaks and "it's not my job" arguments it would cost way too much to have an actual union member picket for their own gripes...

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