November 12, 2014
By Stephanie West
New York, NY – Late Thursday afternoon November 6th, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued another sweeping federal complaint against Cablevision, including personally citing CEO James Dolan, for violations of federal labor law at its Brooklyn unit.
Cablevision was charged with illegally firing Jerome Thompson, conducting an illegal sham poll of workers following CEO James Dolan’s in-person visit designed to intimidate employees with a highly prejudicial speech, and illegally implementing changes in working conditions without bargaining with CWA.
This latest federal complaint comes on top of previous charges including: Illegally firing 22 workers in Brooklyn, bargaining in bad faith, spying on workers, and intimidating workers during a union representation election.
The present NLRB complaint cites Cablevision, Dolan and the so-called “Honest Ballot Association” for violating the National Labor Relations Act. Dolan held a previously unannounced meeting at the company’s East 96th Street garage on September 9th. At the meeting, according to the complaint, Dolan illegally threatened workers they wouldn’t get a pay increase and possibly would lose their jobs if they voted to keep CWA. The Board also charged Dolan with illegally bypassing the union at the meeting to discuss wages and working conditions directly with the employees.
The NLRB cited the “Honest Ballot Association” for its illegal conduct during a September 10th election, saying that the workers were given personal PIN numbers by the HBA prior to the vote that gave workers the impression that their votes were not secret; and further, that the HBA illegally “surveilled” workers as they cast their ballots.
“The federal government has once again charged James Dolan and Cablevision with shamelessly breaking federal labor laws,” said Chris Shelton, Vice President, Communications Workers of America, District 1. “This discriminatory and illegal treatment of hard-working men and women is unacceptable, and it’s time for public officials to make clear to James Dolan that just because he’s a billionaire, he doesn’t get to supersede the law or trample on workers’ rights. Brooklyn Cablevision workers deserve equal pay, the respect of having their federally-protected labor rights honored, and a fair contract.”