What if Worker’s Had a Choice?

Labor Notes [a pro big labor publication] finds that the union bosses of a New York City local communications worker’s union have been caught with their hand in the cookie jar:

A union-appointed prosecutor and financial investigator revealed in a report released March 24 that local officers and executive board members granted themselves $225 a week in unreceipted expenses—a cumulative cost of $156,000 annually for the union’s top leaders.

The expenditure, which was never approved by members, was explained as covering costs for gas, mileage, insurance, and tolls, although the local also paid out up to $37,000 a year in car service costs. Local leaders also gave themselves a 401(k) plan with a contribution equaling 15 percent of salary. The contribution was paid for by members’ dues—again without seeking member approval.

The investigators’ report criticized the “imprudent use of local funds,” noting that officers charged meal costs that averaged more than $225 per meal and hotel rooms that cost $600 a night during out-of-town conferences….Al Luzzi and Joe McAleer, Local 1101 vice presidents, and business agent Pat Gibbons claimed that officers routinely charged both the local and the company for 40 hours of work per week, and had done so for decades. CWA investigators tried and failed to access Verizon payroll records to settle the claim of double-dipping. Neither would officers turn over tax returns to settle the matter.

But the DOL, unlike the union, has the power to subpoena records.

This is another example of why offering workers the Right to Work is so critical. If workers had a choice in paying dues, do you think they would continue to waste their money in this fashion?