NYS AFL-CIO: 2 SPoT Coffee workers fired for trying to organize union

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WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) — The New York State AFL-CIO says two SPoT Coffee employees were fired for trying to organize a union.

According to the Rochester Regional Joint Board, the Philip Kneitinger and Phoenix Cerny tried to form a union with Workers United.

Kneitinger worked at the Hertel Ave. location, while Cerny was employed at the Elmwood location.

They were fired, along with a manager at the Williamsville location who refused to reveal the names of workers who attended a union meeting.

Since this has occurred, there have been discussions of protests at various SPoT locations.

One took place on Wednesday morning at the Williamsville location at 5330 Main St.

David Mangan, a SPoT worker, says “What SPoT is currently doing is unethical, and I stand by the employees who were fired, and our movement to unionize.”

The Rochester Regional Joint Board says charges are being filed at the National Labor Relations Board, saying Kneitinger and Cerny were unlawfully terminated.

“We oppose any hint of anti-union intimidation,” Dick Lipsitz, president of the Western New York Area Labor Federation, AFL-CIO, said. “The only answer to such activity is to organize a vigorous struggle for the right to form the union.”

SPoT has headquarters in both Toronto and Buffalo.

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