The Union Corruption Hits Keep Coming, Despite Watchdogs And Lawsuits

by | Mar 17, 2022 | AFL-CIO, Corruption, IBT, SEIU, UAW

We recently told you about the new twist in the UAW corruption scandal, but as it turns out, all of the direct referendums, prison sentences, and court-appointed watchdogs in the world can’t completely guard against future incidents. That’s common sense, all bolstered by federal lawsuits, which accuse UAW officials of working behind the scenes with a company and against the interests of the workers who they claimed to represent.

For sure, there’s no shortage of other recent corruption news, so let’s get cracking:

  • The level of UAW corruption “disgusted” AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler so much that, by her account, other union leaders and the AFL-CIO strongly considered (permanently) severing ties with the UAW. And that move could very well come at some point, considering how another former UAW local treasurer currently awaits trial on fresh fraud charges involving the embezzlement of over $2 million.
  • A Teamsters local dove in far too deep with an Illinois state senator, Tom Cullerton, who received over $250,000 in an alleged embezzlement scheme that saw him draw salary and benefits for a “do-nothing job in 2013.” The union boss in question, John Coli, also pleaded guilty on extortion charges. Meanwhile, brick workers in Indiana aim to appeal an NLRB ruling that won’t allow them (via a technicality involving a plant acquisition) to decertify a Teamsters local despite a majority of the employees agreeing (via petition) to cease union representation.
  • The International Longshoremen’s Association now faces allegations of long-standing links with New York-New Jersey Mafia families. An ongoing crackdown is digging into possible mob activity facilitated by dockworkers (in states stretching from New York to Texas), particularly at those ports where longshoremen agree to deals (including $400,000 salaries) and just might be looking the other way when it comes to organized crime.
  • A SEIU California local wants to boot its suspended president, who won’t go quietly. Union officials filed for a restraining order after Richard Louis Brown entered the building without permission and removed confidential documents. An ongoing power struggle also features Brown’s claims of an illegal suspension.

A recent Freedom Foundation report (detailing how labor unions received forgivable Paycheck Protection Program loans before their eligibility) led one Utah-based lawyer to take action. Bryan Quesenberry has blown the whistle on dozens of small businesses, including an electrical workers union, to start the federal investigation process for possible fraud charges to be filed in the future.

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