Scab Stabs Union Protesters at Tennis Center
A non-union worker stabs Iron Worker protesting Arthur Ashe Tennis Center's decision to hire non-union
Non-union construction firms are popping up all over New York City. As more building is going on, many of these non-union contractors are failing to properly vet their hires. This was never more evident than at Arthur Ashe stadium yesterday when one of these non-union workers stabbed three proud union Iron Workers.
The scene unfolded at about 3:20 PM outside of the Arthur Ashe Tennis Center in Flushing, Queens. The site of the U.S. Open had recently decided to hire some non-union workers to install some precast panels. As is the standard operating procedure, when Iron Workers Local 197 heard about this, they staged a pop-up picket. Along with their inflatable rats, they peacefully protested, calling on the stadium to use union labor. The Tennis Center’s decision to use non-union labor was especially bad since the stadium was built by the New York City Building and Construction Trades.
As work was letting out, a scab working for subcontractor U.S. Crane and Rigging walked by the picket line and stabbed three Local 197 members with a pocket knife. One of the victims was stabbed in the groin and had an artery nicked, another was stabbed in the left arm, stomach and finger, and a third sustained an injury to his hand. Two of the Local 197 members were rushed to the hospital while the third was treated at the scene. The suspect was arrested and brought to the hospital after Local 197 members valiantly defended their fallen brothers by knocking out the suspect to stop him from stabbing anyone else.
This stabbing is part of a disturbing trend of violence against union workers. In May, UCOMM reported on a scab who threatened to shoot striking Local 3 members at Spectrum. He directed a post on Facebook towards the strikers saying "homies are rolling four deep with a license to carry." During the 2016 Verizon strike, numerous striking union members were targeted by scabs and managers who hit them with cars and truck, dragging them down the road.
While the media often likes to portray union members as “thugs” these instances of violence show us that the scab rats that these non-union firms are hiring are not only a public safety hazard but are the real thugs who are willing to commit acts of violence to take away good paying jobs.