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Thread: TWU President Spends First Night In Jail

  1. #1
    Humbled CaribNVA is offline
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    TWU President Spends First Night In Jail

    TWU President Spends First Night In Jail
    April 25, 2006

    After just one night behind bars, the chief of the Transport Workers Union Local 100 has already had a visit from two of his top supporters.

    Roger Toussaint spent his first night of a 10-day jail sentence in a Manhattan correctional facility Monday night, and supporters have already staked out positions near the so-called "Tombs."

    A bleary-eyed Reverend Al Sharpton camped out overnight in front of the jail in a show of support. Sharpton and TWU Secretary-Treasurer Ed Watt had a face-to-face meeting Tuesday morning with the union leader, who said to stay focused on Wednesday’s MTA decision on whether to ratify the contract. Union members approved the contract last week.

    "That's his main priority is what's going on here - what will happen at the MTA board," said Watt.

    But all indications are that nothing will happen at the MTA board; not a vote, not even a discussion. MTA Chairman Peter Kalikow has said the contract offer is off the table, that it was rendered moot when the union's rank-and-file narrowly rejected it back in January.

    But the contract passed overwhelmingly this month when it was put to a second vote, and Toussaint believes the right thing for the MTA to now do is honor it.

    “He says the MTA has a moral obligation to ratify this contract, and they have an obligation to the riding public and to the workers as well to get this behind us," said Watt.

    The MTA seems not to see it that way, preferring the contract go to binding arbitration, a process that, while already underway, will likely take several months.

    The union says in spite of its initial rejection of the contract, there was never any expiration date on the MTA's offer, so in fact it can't be withdrawn and the MTA has a legal obligation to vote on it.

    If, as expected, the MTA takes no action Wednesday, the union says it will file a lawsuit.

    Meanwhile, Toussaint says he's being treated very well in jail, and that the other inmates are supportive of his cause.

    "He actually joked that he probably got more sleep than the reverend did out here,” said Watt. “We told him that somebody brought mattresses and we just had a group of supporters here, and he was very heartened by that."

    Toussaint surrendered with much fanfare Monday. Vigils and rallies are planned for the rest of Toussaint's sentence.

    action."

  2. #2
    Banned Ms. QT CuTe's Avatar Ms. QT CuTe is offline
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    throwing him jail was a bit much. he didn't call the strike all on his own. what about those who also voted for the strike???

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