Mar 31, 2011 5:20 AM GMT
This has got to strike even supporters as being at least a little thuggish.
WSEU circulating boycott letters
Members of Wisconsin State Employees Union, AFSCME Council 24, have begun circulating letters to businesses in southeast Wisconsin, asking them to support workers’ rights by putting up a sign in their windows.
If businesses fail to comply, the letter says, “Failure to do so will leave us no choice but (to) do a public boycott of your business. And sorry, neutral means 'no' to those who work for the largest employer in the area and are union members."
Jim Parrett, a field representative of Council 24 for Southeast Wisconsin, confirmed the contents of the letter, which carries his signature. But he added that the union was also circulating letters to businesses thanking them for supporting workers’ rights.
Parrett said that since the letters were sent out, he has received threatening phone calls as well as calls from people supporting the state workers.
"I've gotten a lot of threatening phone calls," Parrett said.
Parrett said he believed the letter campaign was going on in other parts of the state. His region includes Racine and Kenosha counties, as well as parts of Waukesha and Walworth counties.
“It’s going on in other parts of the state,” he said Wednesday.
Parrett referred questions to Marty Beil, the head of the Wisconsin State Employees Union. Beil was not immediately available for comment.
In the letter from Parrett to some businesses, he says that, “It is unfortunate that you have chosen ‘not’ to support public workers rights in Wisconsin. In recent past weeks you have been offered a sign by a public employee who works in one of the state facilities in the Union Grove area. These signs simply said, ‘This Business Supports Workers Rights,’ a simple, subtle and we feel non-controversial statement gives the facts at this time.”