Statement by John W. Wilhelm, President-Hospitality Industry, UNITE HERE
Labor unions, like any other entity attempting to govern itself democratically and for the common good of its members, may at times may face difficult challenges. However, we are a membership organization with democratic processes. We have elected leadership bodies, we have a Constitution, and we have a Convention. When there are disputes or disagreements, these bodies serve as the core of our Union’s democracy.
Last November, Bruce Raynor told me that since he cannot win at our members’ Convention in June 2009, he planned “to start the war now.” Just moments ago, Raynor called members of our Executive Board “jerks” for resisting his call to split the Union. The disrespect Raynor shows our governing body of elected leaders is the same disrespect he shows the members of our union in his attempt to trample on their rights and futures.
I am proud that today a large majority of our General Executive Board voted to remain unified. We will not permit Bruce Raynor to split the Union by creating chaos and internal destruction. We will not allow for undemocratic attempts to takeover or split our Union. Instead, we will restore a democratic Union, a Union that fights for strong standards for our current members and a Union that fights to organize workers across North America.