Philly union head fighting against pay raise for his workers

The head of a Philadelphia union is fighting against a pay raise.

One District Council 47 local representing white-collar city workers in Philadelphia does not have the ability to negotiate a contract. So that union received the same deal that city nonunion workers got last month, including a pay raise and the possibility of furloughs.

Acting as an individual, union head Michael Walsh has filed for a temporary restraining order to stop the raises and the other contract terms.

Walsh’s attorney, Ralph Teti, says the city isn’t following its own procedures.

“Here they decided to thumb their nose at the process,” Teti said Tuesday. “It doesn’t take a legal genius to read the charter and enforce what the words say. All we are trying to do is to get them to enforce the words of the charter.”

City solicitor Shelly Smith says she doesn’t understand the suit.

“It’s entirely a procedural issue and it’s a little strange that the union president would be bringing this in his individual capacity, represented by the law firm that represents the union, to keep his employees from getting a raise,” Smith said.

Judge Idee Fox has scheduled a hearing for Friday on the matter.

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