Carpenters union files grievance against Ravens stadium contractor Workers say transfers were retaliation

March 06, 1998|By Jon Morgan | Jon Morgan,SUN STAFF

A half-dozen carpenters are picketing the Ravens stadium construction site, accusing a drywall contractor of illegally transferring them to out-of-state jobs in retaliation for their union support.

The workers' union, the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, has filed charges with the National Labor Relations Board against the employer, Manganaro Corp. of Greenbelt.

The protest disrupted work for a day last week when unionized electrical workers refused to cross the picket line. Work has resumed, said Alice Hoffman, project manager for the Maryland Stadium Authority.

Carpenters union organizer Carlos Camacho said the nonunion Manganaro hired the workers in November and January without knowing of their union affiliation. But last month, after the workers began wearing hats bearing their union's name and talking about membership with nonunion employees, the company transferred them to a job in North Carolina, Camacho said.

The new job would have paid $16 an hour, a decrease from the $22 they received at the Ravens project, and the company offered no transportation or lodging, Camacho said. The workers live in Virginia and refused the job.

"They are trying to segregate them, to isolate them and intimidate the other workers," Camacho said.

When the stadium authority intervened, Manganaro offered the workers jobs in the area, but at different sites, Camacho said. "That's unacceptable. They were hired as partners and have worked as partners for years," he said.

The union filed charges last week with the NLRB, alleging interference with union activities and harassment of union supporters. It also alleges that Manganaro failed to hire, hired and fired or laid off more than 80 of its members. The NLRB is investigating.

Manganaro has two contracts totaling $4.4 million with the Stadium Authority to install drywall, insulated finish systems and other items. Company officials did not respond to requests for comment.

Pub Date: 3/06/98

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