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Mayor Ness banned from Labor Temple’s Wellstone Hall for life

Mayor Ness at Radisson

From the Sept. 16 issue of Labor World:

Without opposition a motion was made, seconded, and carried to ban Don Ness from the Duluth Labor Temple’s Wellstone Hall for life.

Mayor Ness banned from Labor Temple's Wellstone Hall for life

10 Comments

PapaReptevia .

about 3 years ago

I think the DFL and the AFL/CIO should be banned from anything with Paul Wellstone's name on it also.  Their screening "process" for local candidates this year was a pathetic anti-progressive dog and pony show.  Also, their continued support of Rosie and her shameful anti-democratic behavior on the school board and as chairperson is a slap in the face to everything Paul Wellstone stood for.  To have a select few board members meet with administration, set the agenda and rubber-stamp anything the administration wants is a subversion and perversion of the democratic process.  Shame on the local union leadership.  Shame!

Nick L

about 3 years ago

So petty.  I work near the Radisson and have frequently honked my horn as I pass the picketers.  Not anymore.  In fact, I might have lunch there this week.

BadCat!

about 3 years ago

Picketing because employees are on strike to protest unfair/unsafe working conditions: totally legit picket, do not cross.

Picketing because union employees are miffed someone else got hired to do a job: ignore -- a sad waste of time that could be better spent working for the rights of the employees they represent (note: getting hired for the job even if you cost more is not *right*).

Honestly, it's crap like this which turned me from 100% pro-union into a capitalist cynic just like everyone else. Picketing a business because it didn't hire union contractors is like some high school kid getting turned down for prom, then standing on the would-be date's lawn with an "unfair" sign.

Paul Lundgren

about 3 years ago

Some followup:

Business North: Tensions escalate in Radisson, construction trades dispute

It has been a tense battle in recent weeks, particularly after Duluth Mayor Don Ness crossed the picket line to eat at the facility. As a result, The Duluth AFL-CIO Central Labor Body voted on Sept. 10 to ban Ness from the Labor Temple’s Wellstone Hall for life. In response, the mayor pleaded his case on Facebook, asking friends to click the “like” button if they agreed his action was acceptable.

Paul Lundgren

about 3 years ago

And ...

Duluth News Tribune: Mayor solicits support in face of labor snub

Ness' efforts to explain away his actions didn't fly with Craig Olson, president of the Duluth Building and Construction Trades Council. "An informational picket is still a primary picket," he said. "A picket is a picket." Olson said the local trades couldn't establish a strike line because they weren't on the job, as the Radisson's new ownership, the Keading investment group, had instead chosen to hire out-of-state contractors. He explained that informational picketing was the strongest viable labor action in such a situation. As for Ness' decision to cross the line, Olson said: "It was totally disrespectful and a slap in labor's face." ... Olson said recent events will weigh heavily on any political comeback Ness might consider in the future. "His political career is over in this community," he predicted.

Paul Lundgren

about 3 years ago

And the Ness response from Facebook ...

Ness Rebuttal 1
Ness Rebuttal 2
Ness Rebuttal 3

DaVe

about 3 years ago

Plenty of confusion to go around. Informational picket vs work stoppage. Restaurant vs hotel in general, etc, Upon hearing both sides of the story I won't let this incident sway my opinion of Mayor Ness, or my opinion on the vital role of embattled unions, to which we all owe a great deal, whether we know it or not.

BadCat!

about 3 years ago

I heard that the Radisson did contact the union first when were looking to hire, but were told it would be at least a year before they could put someone on it. Instead, they went with non-union labor that could get the job done quicker, only to be picketed by union guys who were apparently still had time to strike despite their year-long backlog of work... (<- this ellipsis is an intentional formatting decision and are correctly used to represent a leading statement or sarcasm)

BadCat!

about 3 years ago

*and is correctly used (Dammit! I fucked up my sarcasm)

Paul Lundgren

about 3 years ago

Sometimes "for life" adds up to about a month.

Ban of Don Ness is lifted

Rescinded

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