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Judge Finds Square One Violated Labor Practices

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) – A judge has found that a Springfield day care and pre-school provider has been violated several labor practices.

A hearing was held over the course of ten days between July and September 2012 after complaints were filed against Square One by members of the United Auto Workers Union Local 2322.

The United Auto Workers Local 2322 represents about 120 teachers, aids, bus and van drivers, and other employees at Square One’s facilities.

On Friday, an administrative law judge with the National Labor Relations Board ruled that Square One did violate several practices.

Judge Michael Rosas found that Square One unlawfully implemented policies and a new video surveillance technology on their buses and vans without notifying the Union or bargaining with it.

Square One was also found to violate labor practices when they interviewed employees about communication with their union representatives, delayed in responding to information requests from the union, and that the organization “schemed” to avoid paying employees what was contractually required by misclassifying employees.

Also among the complaints involved the termination of Dorothy Wilson. She was employed by Square One as a substitute driver between January and April 2012.

Wilson was terminated from her employment on April 11, 2012 from what Square One attorneys argued were performance and safety issues. However, the Union argued that she was terminated she had filled out a union card even as a substitute driver, which is among a group represented by the union.

The judge found that Wilson was “discriminatorily discharged…when she sought admission to the bargaining unit.”

As a result, the judge has ordered Square One is to reinstate Wilson to her former job or a “substantially equivalent position” within 14 days of the ruling and make her whole with lost pay and benefits.

The organization has also been ordered that within 14 days, Square One “make whole all classroom staff and van drivers hired since March 21, 2011 as substitute employees who regularly worked more than 10 hours per week, for any loss of earnings and other benefits provided in the collective bargaining agreement.”

UAWW Local 2322 President Ron Patenaude says in a statement that “We are elated that Square One has finally been held to account for violating our members’ rights.”

A call and email from ABC40 to Square One for comment has not been returned.

CLICK HERE to read the full report from the NLRB.

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