Custodian union set to sue Columbia Univ. for not protecting workers from ‘spoiled, bratty occupiers’

Columbia University may soon be facing a lawsuit by a union representing custodians at the Ivy League school.

Custodians were allegedly targeted by “spoiled” and “bratty” activist students who took over the Hamilton Hall building at the campus in their anti-Israel protests last week. The union is reportedly holding Columbia accountable and is “exploring legal action against the university and the Hamilton Hall occupiers.”

Union officials are “particularly incensed at Columbia for not protecting the workers and particularly pissed at those particular protesters that tried to hold our workers in the building,” according to TWU International President John Samuelsen who spoke with “Fox & Friends” on Thursday.

“Everybody in the building, the entire TWU workforce in the building was fearful and rightfully so. They stormed in… but two of the custodians had to fight their way out. They were explicitly told ‘you’re staying here, you’re not going anywhere, this cause is bigger than you,” Samuelsen said.

“Imagine that… kind of smarmy, sort of entitled, spoiled, bratty occupiers of the building come in and tell these blue-collar men and women ‘you’re not going anywhere, you’re staying here because this cause is bigger than you’ when they had to get home to their families. It’s outrageous, it’s an affront to workers everywhere,” he added.

“Columbia should have never put the custodians or the security officer in that position and that is at the heart of the matter,” Samuelsen told Fox News. “Columbia showed an epic disregard and epically failed to protect the workforce.”

The union is demanding a meeting with Columbia University President Minouche Shafik “regarding mitigation steps necessary to avoid future placement of members in harm’s way if the protests resume, and recompense to the TWU members who were subjected to this despicable conduct,” according to a letter from Samuelsen which also asked for the names of those arrested inside Hamilton Hall, and security footage.

“The TWU Security Officer, an African-American woman, managed to leave the building before the barricades went up,” Samuelson continued. “But she remains shaken by her encounter with the occupying protesters (aka privileged kids) who verbally attacked her in a very aggressive and extremely offensive manner.

“President Shafik, imagine for a moment being in the boots of the blue-collar Custodians and Security Officers. They came to work to earn a day’s pay so they could take care of their families and ended up being held against their will while being subjected to physical and verbal abuse,” the letter went on. “Imagine yourself coming to work and being the victim of a serious crime because Columbia University didn’t care enough about you to engage in common-sense protective measures.”

Frieda Powers


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