New York City police were denounced by socialist websites Tuesday for allegedly driving over a unionized Verizon worker during a strike.
Verizon has faced workplace unrest over troubled contract negotiations with the Communications Workers of America (CWA). Unionized workers have been on strike since April 13 to demand better wages and benefits. Socialist Worker Online and World Socialist Web Site wrote New York police purposely ran over strikers Monday to help replacement workers through a picket line.
“Cops escorted the replacement workers into police vans and unmarked company trucks,” the Socialist Worker Online article stated. “Then, to the amazement and disgust of the strikers, the cops got behind the wheels of the scab trucks and NYPD vans–and drove the scabs out of the hotel. One police-driven vehicle hit a striker near the hotel gates and then sped off, leaving the injured worker.”
The article adds Verizon has utilized replacement workers throughout the strike. It notes the replacement workers were trying to provoke strikers by shouting earlier that day. The police department doesn’t deny hitting one of the strikers but refutes the accusations officers were trying to help get replacement workers through the line.
“Officers were directed by a captain to move contractors vehicles,” a police spokesman told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “One officer struck a pedestrian causing minor injuries.”
The Socialist Worker Online is published by the revolutionary group the International Socialist Organization. The last Verizon contract expired Aug. 1, a few months after negotiations began. Verizon made its final contract offer April 28 but it was rejected by unionized workers. The contract would have included a 7.5 percent increase in wages along with other benefits.
The strike has included thousands of workers and has garnered national attention. Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders denounced Verizon for corporate greed on numerous occasions. Verizon President Lowell McAdam argued the accusations are just not truthful.
The labor dispute has garnered sympathy from some other high-profile individuals. Senate Democrats have weighed in on the dispute with a letter urging Verizon to negotiate a fair deal. Democratic presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has also condemned the company.
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