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Labor union says it has a 'problem with our boss'

Nikita R Stewart

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty released a campaign TV ad this week acknowledging he has mistakes and promising to do better. Now the American Federation of Government Employees has released its own ad -- a 60-second radio spot condemning "boss" Fenty.


"We have a problem with our boss. He disrespects us. He treats us as if we just don't matter...," a woman says, continuing with a spiel about the termination of day care workers.

"It was cold and arrogant," she says of the firings.

She also talks about the troubled Public Employee Relations Board which, left with several vacancies, was unable to conduct business. "No board, no due process, no checks and balances," she says.

The ad never mentions Fenty's name and only reveals his identity at the end: "an uncaring boss who also happens to be the mayor."

You can listen to the entire ad here.

AFGE and several other labor unions have endorsed Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray, Fenty's main opponent in the Sept. 14th Democratic primary.

The union previously released a YouTube video, featuring teddy bears and commenting on controversy over recreation construction contracts awarded to firms with ties to Fenty.

Spokeswoman Enid Doggett said the new radio spot, airing on Radio One stations, is costing the union $20,000 over the next two weeks.

By Nikita R Stewart  |  August 19, 2010; 3:30 PM ET
Categories:  2010 District Election , Mayor Fenty , Nikita Stewart , Vincent C. Gray  | Tags: AFGE, Mayor Adrian Fenty, Vincent C. Gray, apology, primary  
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Comments

Suggestion- have the unions support some of the programs these people are upset about??? at $20,000 a day.. it could be helpful.

results -- better city

"non negotiable"

Posted by: pdv1 | August 19, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

The "teachers" in the child care program had no college education and the quality of the program was very low. This program was slated to close every year because of declining enrollment. This kind of add is only going to show to the educated sector of the voters that Gray is going to go back to the era of no accountability. The workers who complain about losing their jobs didn't have the credentials to teach. They suffered because they were not competitive in the teaching market and that is their own fault.

Posted by: questionmark23 | August 19, 2010 11:07 PM | Report abuse

questionmark23,

you are probably correct, but parents came forward that could not afford the alternative. Plus, these kids and parents ended up going back into the system. Cost the city more money in the long run. We should have handled it better. I think the point is quality day care is needed, and folks need their jobs to maintain their self respect. The District government acted like it just did not care.

Posted by: wkitout | August 20, 2010 12:59 AM | Report abuse


An overwhelming majority of the black voters in DC, want to go back to the days of Marion Barry. When mediocrity was the norm.

Posted by: demtse | August 20, 2010 7:24 AM | Report abuse

OK. On unions. Generally, I support them. When they do their jobs they serve a great purpose. Protecting the safety and health of America's workforce. That said, the union LEADERSHIP that represents DISTRICT employees, is interested in noting but heavy handed posturing and see their job to be nothing more than disrespecting those that they say claim disrespecting them. They are QUITE childish. Their membership tends to elect the most drama driven unprofessional characters as leaders thinking that this will get them real results.

I am voting for Gray, however, I do not expect or desire for him to take ANY B.S. off of "the District's" AFGE union leadership. The union membership have made their leadership choice to their own detriment. They, the union, serve "A" purpose but not "THE" purpose. This is a lesson I presume they need to learn the hard way.

Posted by: concernedaboutdc | August 20, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

"An overwhelming majority of the black voters in DC, want to go back to the days of Marion Barry. When mediocrity was the norm."

Posted by: demtse | August 20, 2010 7:24 AM
----------------------------------------
That is usually the ignorant and broad-based assumption made about blacks who are capable of being observant, involved, doing the research, making informed decisions about candidates and choices which might not be popular among the majority of whites. Like it or not, we are not all that exceptional to what you perceive to be the "norm", and the criticism of Adrian Fenty’s serious missteps is not without merit. All roads to mediocrity in DC do not lead to Marion Barry. We are well aware that this country has seen its fair share of white politicians with little or no integrity.

Posted by: logosdesigns | August 20, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

It's a mistake to think that Gray would be a return to the era of Barry--no one wants that--but it is equally a mistake to think that Fenty is a progressive leader since DC agencies do not function any better under him--consider the law suits, wasted money, high attrition rates and complaints filed against these agencies.

It is true that union leaders make six figure salaries and do not represent the best interests of either their members or DC residents. Frequently, they collaborate with DC managers to keep opertions running the same and nothing progesses, as a result.

Voters need to understand the dynamics of this situation.

Posted by: darkydarky | August 20, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

"It's a mistake to think that Gray would be a return to the era of Barry--no one wants that--"

Um...what rock have you been hiding under. If Barry's name were on the ballot for mayor, do you honestly think Ward 7 and 8 would vote for Gray? Gray would get some votes here in Ward 7, but definitely wouldn't win.

Posted by: streff | August 20, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

All one has to do is look at the positive changes within the DC school system - both teachers, educational materials now available not back or unordered as in the past, and the overall quality of teachers in the District. It is not about parents affording a day care that is less than but about children deserving equality in any day care program. If it is not such then it should not be open. Children are more likely to be abused, denied care, and not served as they should be nutritionally and educationally when the teacher at whatever level is unlicensed and unchecked. The union couldn't even ensure that this was enforced but looked the other way until Ms. Rhee said no more and raised the bar. I support unions generally but the DC union mentioned above has and is not doing the credible job that they should be; it is not just about collecting union dues but also ensuring that it's members do the job to the best of their abilities and are trained to do same.
Mr. Fenty may not be perfect but he is far above the likes of Mr. Gray who per his past and present record is right up there with the Mayor of SE DC - Mr. Berry who can do no wrong in the eyes of the community - legally he doesn't pay his taxes as he should, has little or no ethical boundaries with employees, finances, scruple's, etc. The election of Mr. Gray will only put the district back to the past - somewhat like Illinois politics in the White community.

Posted by: davidmswyahoocom | August 20, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Support for Gray or non-support of Fenty, does not equate to support for Barry. I am not a fan of either candidate, but Fenty certainly doesn't posess ethical boundaries either. However, he is not Marion Barry, which (despite his unethical conduct), is enough for some voters in the same vein as Gray is not Fenty.

Posted by: logosdesigns | August 20, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

**correction**

Support for Gray or non-support of Fenty, does not equate to support for Barry. I am not a fan of either candidate, but Fenty certainly doesn't posess ethical boundaries either. However, Gray is not Marion Barry, which (despite his unethical conduct), is enough for some voters in the same vein as Gray is not Fenty.

Posted by: logosdesigns | August 20, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

It's a matter of time before the federal government pulls the plug on DC Government corruption, takes control,upgrades and integrates the local government--as it needs to be.

At present, the DC Government is a golden gravy train at the top for politicians and their cronies,and absolutely crumbs at the bottom with substandard compensation, apartheid-style disparites in retirement benefits, and little upward mobility.

Most DC voters are not aware that their tax dollars are wasted providing expensive health insurance to ILLEGAL aliens, and wasted in numreous other ways, while racial disparities in compensation and benefits are not reported on in the media.

Posted by: darkydarky | August 20, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

LogoDesigns- you are laughably wrong. Today I got a robocall from Barry talking about Vincent Gray. Quite simply, Gray and Barry are in this together and only a fool would be blind to it- I received a robocall this VERY EVENING from Barry talking about his friendship and partnership with Gray! LogoDesigns, explain how you're right and Marion Barry himself is wrong.

Posted by: bbcrock | August 20, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Everyone better listen to bb crock.
He is a DCPS employee who is an EDUCATED man.
His child was calculating square roots in 1st grade.
A real genuis, that bb crock.
Listen to him!

Posted by: phillipmarlowe | August 20, 2010 11:37 PM | Report abuse

bbcock---Only a fool would not see the hypocrisy in holding up Barry, Gray and any number of people as examples of corruption while disregarding the obvious same behavior in Fenty. Enjoy your laughter and missing the point. I don't argue with fools.

Posted by: logosdesigns | August 21, 2010 12:54 AM | Report abuse

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