Media Center

Congresswoman Clarke Stands With the Communication Workers of America

Brooklyn, N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement on the attempt by Cablevision to deny due process rights to its workers who are members of the Communications Workers of America. Jerome Thompson,  who had worked with Cablevision for eleven years and was a leader in organizing his fellow workers, was fired after he compared the company’s attempts to undermine the rights of its workers to slavery.

“It has been widely acknowledged that Thompson’s comment resulted in his dismissal. I am concerned that this action was in contrast to the disparate treatment toward another employee who – known to have been anti-union and though reprimanded – was subsequently promoted after she used extremely offensive racial slurs in reference to her African-American colleagues on social media. It is disturbing to know that an individual with such ill will against her colleagues remains on the job. These actions do not pass the smell test.

“I stand with the members of the Communications Workers of America, for the rights to which all workers are entitled. I am concerned about the disparate treatment of the employees and the inconsistency in the application of their due process rights. These actions by the leadership at Cablevision strengthens the impression and perception that they have been trying to divide their workers from each other to prevent them from exercising their right to collective bargaining. The firing of Jerome Thompson appears to have been intended to undermine the morale of other workers with the threat of reprisal for attempting to organize. Clearly the workers, whether union members or non-union members, have the right to work without discrimination, based on race or religion or sex or any other factor. And these workers have the right to form a labor union and to bargain collectively. If we surrender the rights of a single worker, we have surrendered the rights of all workers. I call upon Cablevision and its management to use this opportunity to redouble their efforts to negotiate, in good faith, with the Communication Workers of America (CWA).”

U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke is a member of the House Committee on Small Business, Ethics, and Homeland Security, where she is the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies. She represents many neighborhoods in central and southern Brooklyn, NY which include Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, parts of Park Slope and Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.

Issues: