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  • admin
  • 11 September 2013

September 11, 2013

Press release: More than 100 carpenters, millwrights to hand out informational flyers after Woodhaven blocks free speech

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, 9/11/13
DETROIT – More than 100 members of the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights will join about two dozen members residing in Woodhaven on Thursday to distribute handouts informing residents that the City of Woodhaven is preventing the union from exercising its first amendment rights.

The MRCC filed a lawsuit against the City of Woodhaven on Sep. 6 in U.S. District Court in Detroit. On Aug. 15 and Aug. 27, Woodhaven police ordered MRCC representatives to remove a banner that was displayed to let residents know that contractors hired by LA Fitness to build its new facility in Woodhaven were not paying area wages and benefits. The union’s stationary banner was placed on a public easement. The peaceful display of the banner is protected by federal labor law and the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the MRCC said.

The handouts being distributed on Thursday say: “Woodhaven is denying the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights’ First Amendment rights by not allowing the Union to display a lawful banner informing residents that there is a labor dispute between the Union and LA Fitness.”

The handout goes on to say: “Tell Woodhaven City Council to respect the U.S. Constitution! Call City Council: 734-675-4900.”

“It’s important for the residents of Woodhaven to know that their local government wants to silence people from talking about fair wages and benefits and how they’re important to Michigan’s entire middle class,” said MRCC Executive Secretary-Treasurer Mike Jackson. “For more than 130 years, carpenters and millwrights have always fought on the side of the working man and woman for things like the 8-hour workday, safe working conditions, training, apprenticeships, and real partnerships between employers and employees that built today’s middle class. When an employer doesn’t play by the rules and tries to exploit workers, we’re ready to stand up because this issue affects the entire middle class.”