A New York City Council member joined striking workers picketing Charter Communications Thursday, as a work stoppage against the MSO involving 1,800 technicians edged closer to the three-month mark.
Councilman Rory Lancman urged Charter to stop importing workers from other states to do the jobs of the striking International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 3 members, who walked out on March 28 over pension and health care issues.
“Charter Communications' decision to use out-of-state contractors not only goes against its franchise agreement with the city, but also the values we hold as New Yorkers," Lancman said. “We believe that work in New York City should be performed by New York City workers, like Local 3, who have the training and expertise to get the job done right.”
It’s not the first time city officials have intervened in the three-month-old labor stoppage. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has made numerous overtures, and an independent mediator stepped in at one point.
A Charter spokesman told the New York Daily News that the cable company has lived up to its franchise agreement with the city.
“The contractors serving our customers during the strike are overwhelmingly from New York City. However, the franchise clearly allows the company to use contractors from elsewhere, which we are doing,” the rep said.
“While we will not elaborate on our contingency planning, the use of a stringent vetting process and use of quality contractors is paramount so that we may best serve our customers. We are well aware of this franchise term and are complying fully with its mandate," he added.