Skokie labor strife: Golan’s workers strike streets after unionizing
August 27, 2014 - storage organizer
SKOKIE — Only dual years after Golan’s Moving and Storage was named Skokie’s Merchant of a Year, a endowment has taken on sour irony to some-more than 90 distinguished workers sealed in a labor brawl with their employer.
Outside Golan’s in Skokie’s industrial corridor, dozens of workers male a picket line 6 days a week, their signs job out Golan’s for what workers explain are a litany of astray labor practices and an rejection to negotiate with a kinship over a initial contract.
Signs on Golan’s circuitously skill publicize for workers and arrangement a write series for those on strike wishing to lapse to work.
One sign, versions of that are created in both English and Spanish given many distinguished workers are Latino, simulate a order between a dual sides.
“It is apparent that a strike opposite Golan’s, during a rise relocating season, is deleterious not usually Golan’s, yet also a employees who would routinely be operative overtime during this time,” a pointer reads.
Golan’s invites workers to call dispatch and lapse to their jobs, questions a union’s ability to compensate strike advantages for many longer and calls statements by a kinship “reckless and dishonest.”
Striking employees contend that there is no law to Golan’s claims.
The Skokie Review reached out to Golan’s several times including creation dual visits to a trickery and mixed phone calls. A association mouthpiece pronounced she would check with lawyers before responding yet never did so.
Before unionizing, Golan’s workers sought assistance from a internal workman center, Arise Chicago, over innumerable workplace issues.
“A organisation of workers went to Arise angry about salary burglary and many other irregularities,” pronounced Jorge Mujica, vital campaigns organizer for Arise. It shortly became clear, he said, that a workers were in need of “a some-more permanent solution.”
Arise put them in hold with a Teamsters, that launched an organizing drive.
In December, Golan’s workers voted 62-11 to unionize as partial of Teamsters Local 705, yet they have nonetheless to lay down with a association to produce out a initial contract. According to workers, a association continues to cancel sessions, that stirred a strike on Jul 27. Only 4 employees authorised to strike now are operative during Golan’s, workers say.
Golan’s does not compensate advantages including health insurance, and many workers have not perceived raises, they say. But their list of complaints is even longer.
“There were too many deductions from foremen and drivers that were not available in any created way,” pronounced Augusto Rufasto, a Golan’s inciter for scarcely 3 years. “So fundamentally (workers) were not means to redeem this income they had given a management.”
Rufasto pronounced workers were forced to determine to these deductions if they wanted to be promoted.
“That means if we wanted to be promoted to a executive or a driver, we indispensable to give a deposition of $500 yet (received) no receipt,” he said. “There’s people who (became) foremen 8 years ago and they still don’t get their income back.”
Javier Torres, a Golan’s worker for over a year, was paid $14.50 an hour with elect given he’s a motorist and foreman.
“They asked for a $500 deposition and they never give we behind that money,” he said. “When we make a small mistake, they assign we for that mistake. They make we compensate for that mistake. Even if they have a word or anything, they only wish to assign you.”
Juan Lopes, a Golan’s worker for some-more than a year, pronounced a kinship was indispensable given workers have no word nor adequate compensate for days off.
Lopes was hired during $10 an hour where his compensate has remained, he said, even after being told he would make $11.50.
Worker Leo Silva, a two-year Golan’s employee, called conditions “bad” given of carrying no advantages or satisfactory compensate for overtime or holidays.
Martin Cortez, a 14-year-employee during Golan’s, pronounced a workers have waited a prolonged time to be treated fairly.
“We don’t have benefits,” he said. “We don’t have insurance. This is a many critical (thing) for a workers. We’ve waited some-more than 10 years and we don’t have nothing.”
Richard de Vries, kinship deputy for Teamsters Local 705, stood with a Golan’s workers final week opposite from a association headquarters.
“We have been behind and onward with a association with a bottom-line design of a association complying with a smallest amicable reserve net that’s out there,” he said.
De Vries listed a litany of issues workers have with a company.
“It’s a uninterrupted set of issues,” he said. “We started negotiating in Feb and given Feb we’ve had a dozen cancellations.”
Under a National Labor Relations Act, a association can run a decertification debate after a year. De Vries pronounced that some employers do all they can during a year to disprove a kinship and denote to employees “the kinship can get zero for you.”
“Unfortunately for a company, though, is that people have already taken their opinion regulating their feet by walking out a doorway to criticism a mixed astray labor use charges,” he said.
While Golan’s did not respond to a Review, a orator in one published news pronounced a association wants a workers back, progressing it has been perplexing to strech an agreement with them and recently handed out raises.
The Golan workers this month brought their box to a Skokie Village Board, seeking inaugurated leaders to tell Golan’s to discount in good faith.
“The business are especially from Skokie and many of a workers do live in Skokie,” Rufasto told a board. “This is a matter substantially of seductiveness to this village. What we ask from we — from a mayor and a encampment of Skokie — is to call a government and a owners of a Golan’s association and tell them to negotiate with us immediately and in good faith.”
Skokie residents Maria Salazar, a member of Latinos in Skokie, and Rabbi Ben Greenberg, executive of programs for a Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, also upheld a workers during a Aug. 18 meeting.
Greenberg pronounced that some-more than 10 complaints have been lodged with a Department of Labor over “wage theft” by Golan’s.
He asked a Village Board to examine a complaints and to pass an bidding opposite salary burglary identical to one on a books in Chicago.
“It should not be a argumentative act to pass an bidding opposite salary theft,” he said. “All of a ethical, faith, and dignified traditions unequivocally announce salary burglary to be a serious defilement of a grace of any and each one of us.”
While Skokie Mayor George Van Dusen pronounced that a village’s house warn will investigate a Chicago ordinance, he after pronounced a encampment doesn’t have management to meddle directly in a brawl between Golan’s and a union.
Three friends non-stop Golan’s in 1990 and stretched a business several times. The business grew to 30 bureau staff, 80 to 100 movers in winter and as many as 200 movers in summer when business voted it Skokie Merchant of a Year in 2012.