Toussaint and his henchmen scream that “No” voters have had no follow-up after the contract rejection. It’s Toussaint’s job, as the leader of the Local, to accept the members’ will and figure how to carry it out. Instead, this traitorous crew left it to the MTA to make their plans. He has clearly hoped that we’ll feel helpless and accept the same contract or one like it.
This is not just irresponsible and disrespectful, it’s a lie. RTW has played a particularly strong role in putting forward an action plan, before during and after the strike. RTW came out rapidly after the contract rejection and was distributed widely. (Back copies of RTW are available on request.)
Contract demands publicized by RTW included:
These demands in fact won the votes of almost all Trackworkers and TEMs at the last Track Division evening meeting. But even right after the vote was announced, we know for a fact that militant workers who voted “No” were especially eager to proceed forward at that time.
Also, the Committee for a Better Contract (CBC) has raised and publicized strategies to move forward, and the CBC officially adopted the demands mentioned above. As well, at a meeting of the CBC on February 2, RTW supporter Eric Josephson and others informed around 50 participants about the Track Division meeting’s stand and urged a mass Local 100 rally at MTA headquarters.
To decide how to fight for contract demands that will satisfy all members (“Yes” and “No” voters alike), we have argued for and still champion the need for real General Membership Meetings, with full member speaking and voting rights. And all negotiating Committee members must participate fully in all contract talks!
There were several Toussaint supporters present. RTW supporter Eric Josephson, speaking from the podium, challenged the pro-Toussaint clique to unite in favor of a mass Local rally, and they all agreed with this demand. The Toussaintites present included JP Patafio, TA Surface union Chair at Jackie Gleason Depot, and one of Toussaint’s leading “left” hatchetmen. (Another pro-Toussaint bus division official present, Willie Rivera, claimed he was attending to find out what motivated “No” voters. He not only found out, but what Josephson said was so overwhelmingly sensible regarding a mass rally against the MTA that he actually ended up indicating agreement with some of it too!)
Later on, however, Toussaint’s wreckers recovered from this fit of unity and remembered that they had come to disrupt. A number of them then spoke at length, in and out of turn, to claim that the meeting was denying their right to speak and distribute literature. Josephson and others had received the supposedly “forbidden” literature from Toussaint’s guys and taken it back to their co-workers, to show them what nonsense Toussaint & Co. were spreading.
Why does Toussaint say that no one had any ideas for follow-up? Toussaint has to appear as the only one with ideas, and especially enjoys putting down militant workers nowadays. He wants the members to believe it’s either his way or the abyss. But he’s leading to the abyss and lying that no one else has a map.
Let us know what you think of our views.
If you agree, let us know.
If you disagree, let’s discuss it.
Write to us:
P.O. Box 1936
Murray Hill Station
New York, NY 10156