Read the letters Montgomery County Democrats claim constitute union election interference by Lower Gwynedd Township

Through the right-to-know process, has obtained the letter (view) and memorandum (view) that the Montgomery County Democratic Committee has claimed constitute interference by Lower Gwynedd Township in the potential unionization of its public works staff.

As reported, in 2023 the township’s public works staff held an election on whether to join the Operating Engineers Union. The election failed.

In the lead up to the election, the township sent a letter on October 23, 2023 and a memorandum on November 15, 2023 to the public works staff. The letter concludes with the following paragraph:

The Supervisors will respect the decision that Public Works collectively makes when you vote in the election. If you want to keep the open-door policies that we have now, then vote against the union. If you want all discussion about the terms and conditions of your employment to go through the union, then vote for it. But most importantly, VOTE. A majority of ballots actually cast on the day of the election will determine whether Local 542 will represent you.

The follow-up memorandum outlined how the township would have to interact with employees going forward if they decided to join the union. For example, instead of talking with employees directly on issues concerning their employment, the township would have to go through a shop steward and the union.

Those documents led the Montgomery County Democratic Committee to issue a rebuke to township officials and claim interference in the election. From the statement:

Let there be no ambiguity, there were letters sent by Lower Gwynedd management to apply pressure in the midst of a union organizing election. This is a direct contradiction to the Democratic Party’s support for the freedom of workers to join a union and earn a family-sustaining wage.

The township’s board of supervisors at the time the election took place consisted of four Democrats and one Republican.

Read the letters (linked in first paragraph) and let us know what you think.