FirstEnergy CEO Tony the Trickster must have run out of stale Halloween candy to toss to the union workers who keep his evil empire running. Union workers have been staging protests outside his home in recent months, as they continue to work without a contract while attempting to negotiate with Tony's union-busting company that never negotiates. Now FirstEnergy has upped the ante by whining to a judge to make them stop. Way to go, champ! Sttttoooppppppp it! Wahhhhhhhhhh! Moooooooommmmmmmmmy!
Last week, FirstEnergy's legal henchmen took Tony's whining to court:
Common Pleas Judge Jane M. Davis on Wednesday granted the request by Akron-based FirstEnergy against the Utility Workers Union of America, System Local 102 and its union members.
On Saturday, according to the complaint, about 25 to 30 pickets showed up at the Green home of FirstEnergy Chief Executive Officer Tony Alexander at 9 a.m. By 10:30 a.m., more than 65 protesters on the sidewalk and along the street in the residential neighborhood were holding signs reading: “Bonus for bosses, cuts for labor” and “Tony is a Rat.”
The pickets also used air horns, with the majority of the pickets staying until 12:15 p.m. A few remained until 2:45 p.m.
A neighbor complained to the pickets about the traffic and nuisance, according to the complaint.
The complaint also says there have been at least eight protests at Alexander’s house since April, usually involving eight to 12 people.
Apparently all the proletarian partying on the sidewalk has gotten to the old grouch. Wahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, Tony, WAHHHHHHHHHHHH!
I wonder if it's half as inconvenient for Tony as all the burdens he wants to put on his workers so that he can rake in more profits?
Send in the spies...
An affidavit said FirstEnergy officials learned there were sign-up sheets for protests planned for the next two Saturdays at the Bath Township home of Charles Jones, FirstEnergy executive vice president and president of FirstEnegy Utilities, and the Richfield home of Lynnette Cavalier, senior vice president of human resources.
The request for the restraining order asked that the protests be limited to no more than five people and that they prohibited from using bullhorns or air horns and screaming, yelling or changing “in a manner intended to disturb.” [typo alert! I think the reporter meant "chanting," not "changing."]
FirstEnergy spokesman Todd Schneider said the company’s actions were in response to the large, “inappropriate” demonstration in a residential area.
“Protesting in front of our corporate headquarters is one thing. Protesting in a residential neighborhood is a different thing,” he said. “It was truly disruptive on a Saturday morning for them to be using a bullhorns and air horns.”
Alexander was not home at the time of last week’s protests, Schneider said, but has been home during some of the eight other protests there.
He confirmed that an off-duty local officer has been patrolling the area near Alexander’s home since the protests began in April. At times, the protesters have approached the home and neighbors’ homes, Schneider said.
He declined to say whether Alexander had hired security at other times of the day.
FirstEnergy is not trying to shut down future protests at homes, Schneider said, but requested they be limited to five people or fewer.
In granting the restraining order, however, Davis — or someone in her court — wrote “0” on a line next to the number of pickets allowed. She also set a hearing date of Sept. 29.
Bob Whalen, president of the Utility Workers of America System Local 102, said he would send word to his members to comply with the retraining order but questioned whether it violates the workers’ rights.
“We certainly will not be there. There won’t be anything sanctioned by the union. I don’t want to put my people in harm’s way [legally], and we’re not that kind of organization,” Whalen said. “We are looking at the constitutionality of that judge’s order right now.”
Whalen said he was not present at the protest in front of Alexander’s home and was not sure whether there were protests planned for the next two Saturdays, but said he has a retired worker who organizes protests.
“They have a calendar full of plans, and I really don’t micromanage it,” he said.
A call to Davis’ court chambers asking about the legality of the restraining order was not returned.
ACLU spokesman Gary Daniels said that without knowing the specifics of this case, he would comment only in acknowledging that a 1998 Supreme Court ruling allows the government to limit pickets at a single residence.
Meanwhile, 680 workers of West Penn Power, Potomac Edison and a small power plant called AE345 continue to work without a contract.
Just one more example of the growing divide between the haves and the have nots, the worker bees and the figureheads. Shut up and row, slaves.