NEW YORK, Aug. 17, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following statement was released today by Mike Hellstrom, business manager of Laborers Local 108:
Commissioner Garcia's position on franchising/carting reform highlights her lack of respect for the concerns of the hard working men and women in the industry.
Let's be clear – this proposal does nothing to require safety standards for the men and women that execute the dangerous work to keep this city safe and clean. It also does very little to address the concerns of the environmental community. Lastly, it will take years to implement, rather than incorporating reforms now.
We have repeatedly expressed to the Administration our concerns, not only with franchising, but with their support for Intro 495, being pushed by Council member Antonio Reynoso, an unquestionable job killer for members and families of Laborers Local 108.
Our repeated requests to be heard on these matters before any policy decision be released fell on deaf ears. Instead, Commissioner Garcia chose to surround herself with people spewing misinformation, with zero regard for the union families of Local 108.
This is not a productive or respectful approach to creating smart policy.
We cannot continue to sit by and let public officials like Commissioner Garcia pick and choose the voices they will listen too. It should not be about which group will give her the best sound bite, it should be about jobs and the safety of our workforce.
These policy decisions have serious, life altering implications for the members of Laborers Local 108. We will take every action necessary and spend whatever resources necessary to make sure the Administration and City Council hears the voices of the men, women and families of our union.
Going forward, I hope the administration will rethink their approach to creating smart policy. They should be more collaborative before initiating a very public, drawn out fight. Recent history suggest that approach will not lead to what is best for all New Yorkers, just a select few.
Mike Hellstrom is the business manager of the 2,500 member Laborers Local 108, representing workers in the waste and recycling industry. Laborers Local 108 is the largest union in the commercial and private carting industry of New York City representing over 1,000 workers in the greater metropolitan New York region.
SOURCE Laborers' Local 108