BELOW IS THE COMPLETE TEXT OF A LETTER TO "THE CHIEF" NEWSPAPER PUBLISHED IN THE MARCH 25, 2005 ISSUE.
STOP THE WITCH-HUNT IN LOCAL 100!
March 10, 2005
YOUR MARCH 4 ISSUE CONTAINED a letter by a "Womenıs Caucus of the TWU Local 100 Executive Board," accusing Local 100 Station VP John Mooney of sexism. The letter describes a motion to censure Mooney at the February 16 Board meeting. The letter also attacked myself and others for not supporting the censure motion.
Sexism is ugly. But, if someone is accused of sexism and not allowed to defend oneself itıs also an injustice. In this case itıs a witch-hunt against independent officers before our December contract fight.
When the alleged incident occurred VP Mooney was representing another dissident officer at an internal discipline hearing. Accusers say Mooney asked the union attorney at the hearing whether she had a sexual relationship with Toussaint loyalist Ed Watt, the Local 100 Treasurer, present at the hearing, and suggested she had had sex with the entire trial committee.
Mooney denies ALL of the allegations.
Mooney asked the attorney if she had a "personal" (not "sexual") relationship with Watt. If true, as Mooney had heard, her neutrality was a sham. Mooney's question was appropriate and couldıve led her to recuse herself from proceedings.
The allegations against Mooney were made in a lynch-mob atmosphere. There were no formal charges and no trial committee to listen to the tape of the trial. Instead, a motion to censure was passed, inflamed by hearsay.
Mooney tried many times to answer his accusers but Toussaint refused to let him speak. Mooney and others called out "play the tape" but Toussaint again refused.
I asked Toussaint myself to allow Mooney to speak. "No," once again. Toussaint screamed three times, "F--- you, Mooney!" (Later, Recording Secretary Darlyne Lawson refused my written request to hear the tape. According to one member of the "Womenıs Committee" they had not listened to the tape themselves!)
In my 18 years as a Local 100 activist, including early membership in the "New Directions Caucus" which brought Toussaint to power, and a three-time Executive Board member, I have never seen such a witch-hunt. Even during the sellout Sonny Hall - Willie James regime, there was at least a show of democracy. No longer.
After bureaucratically crushing New Directions in 2001 and endlessly purging his staff, Toussaint seeks to eliminate criticism. In particular, he is seething against Mooney for a lawsuit that FIVE of the SEVEN VPs have filed against Toussaint's violations of union democracy.
Toussaint has refused to mobilize against massive job loss due to booth closings and computerized trains, as well as threats to Private Bus Lines workers. He wants to remove all officers that wonıt meekly play follow the leader. Toussaint must stop his witch-hunt now. Letıs hear the tape!
Local 100 Executive Board for Station
731 W. 183 St.