February 25, 2015 |
A CLIMATE OF fear forced Ukrainian migrant workers to accept endless debt and slavery in Philadelphia and nearby locations, federal prosecutors alleged yesterday. "Workers were punched in the face, punched in the body, they were punched everywhere," Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Velez told a jury in closing arguments in the racketeering-conspiracy trial of two brothers in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia. Velez said the defendants, Mykhaylo Botsvynyuk and Yaroslav Botsvynyuk - a/k/a Yaroslav Churuk - are "members of a criminal enterprise to smuggle Ukrainians" into the U.S. for "involuntary servitude.
February 11, 2015 |
A MONTHS-LONG labor dispute allegedly kicked into high gear Saturday when about 200 unionized carpenters descended on the Philadelphia Auto Show, officials said. John McNichol, president and chief executive of the Pennsylvania Convention Center, told the Daily News yesterday that "belligerent" members of the Metropolitan Regional Council of Carpenters vandalized cars, accosted vendors and generally disrupted the show, which ended Sunday. Now, he's hoping that a temporary restraining order against the union can help calm things down in a contract dispute over the carpenters' ability to work inside the center.
February 11, 2015 |
Irv Segal, 81, of Warminster, formerly of Elkins Park, a pioneer in the development of social and recreational programs for special populations, died Tuesday, Feb. 3, of kidney failure at Abington Hospice in Warminster. In the 1960s, Mr. Segal, a licensed social worker, founded one of the earliest socialization programs for those with special needs, and in 1972, he branched out by founding the Guided Tour Inc. The social agency, believed by his family to be one of the first of its kind, took thousands of adults with developmental and physical challenges on supervised vacations in the United States and throughout the world.
February 7, 2015 |
The National Labor Relations Board's Philadelphia office has agreed to hear complaints filed by Au Bon Pain employees at the Philadelphia International Airport. In their unfair labor practice charges filed last year, the employees complained that in September the company tried to dissuade them from attempting to form a union by disciplining two of the activists, by currying favor by offering to pay for an employee's child care and by bringing in the Boston-based company's chief executive to meet workers.
February 6, 2015 |
Ashaniere White sat in a Delaware County courtroom Wednesday, reading aloud page after page of text messages sent between her and two of the defendants on trial in the September 2013 killing of a Rite Aid store manager in Chester. The exchanges were rich in text abbreviations, jargon, and street lingo, which White translated when asked by prosecutor Christopher DiRosato. "Bread" means money, White said. "Two stacks" is $2,000. "Lick" is a robbery, and "jawn" has many definitions, including job, girl, and robbery, White said.
February 5, 2015 |
So who does have jurisdiction to settle claims by union carpenters and Teamsters that the Convention Center has wrongfully denied them the right to work in the building? Maybe nobody. In July, the National Labor Relations Board said it did not have the right to hear the case because the unions' beef was with the state-run Convention Center Authority, and it doesn't have jurisdiction over state entities. Hearing that decision, the unions turned to the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board, which handles state labor disputes.
February 4, 2015 |
There are few true American heroes whose reputations haven't been tarnished with time. Deaf and blind Helen Keller and her indefatigable teacher, Annie Sullivan, are two of them. Media Theatre's production of The Miracle Worker is only the latest to introduce William Gibson's adaptation of Keller's autobiography, The Story of My Life , to another generation, but it's a welcome introduction. Gibson's take on the Keller-Sullivan relationship has seen iterations on radio, television, film (three times)
February 4, 2015 |
The Nutter administration has put a price tag on fixing the Department of Licenses and Inspections: $13.9 million, which would cover 110 new city employees and their equipment. The department has about 300 employees and an annual budget of $27.6 million. Under the changes outlined in a draft report titled "L&I 2015 Plan for a Safer City," the agency would gain 83 employees. An additional 27 would go to other city agencies, including the Fire Department. The report is the administration's response to recommendations made by mayor's special independent advisory commission, which in October suggested 37 steps for reforming L&I. The commission - created in response to the 2013 Center City building collapse that killed six people and injured 13 - found that L&I was underfunded, had too many responsibilities, and would better operate as two agencies: a Department of Buildings and a Department of Business Compliance.
February 3, 2015 |
Randolph Sanders was worried - his boss was onto him. He knew Kim Jones, his supervisor at Families and Schools Together, an after-school outreach program, suspected he was misappropriating funds, law enforcement sources said Sunday. He knew that she had scheduled a meeting for that very morning with Department of Human Services officials, the sources said. He was worried she would report him. He was worried that he would lose his job. So, law enforcement sources said, he packed a gun in his duffel bag. He knew her morning routine - that she caught the bus at 12th and Jefferson Streets on her way to work.