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Borough of Bradley Beach Workers Need Your Help

The hardworking men and women in the clerical, dispatch, and public works departments have been working without a contract since January 1, 2023.

Update: July 24

Letter to Mayor Fox, July 24, 2024
Letter sent to Borough of Bradley Beach Mayor Larry Fox, from UFCW Local 152 President Daniel Ross, Jr. on July 24, 2024.

On Wednesday, July 24, UFCW Local 152 President Daniel Ross, Jr. sent another letter to Mayor Larry Fox. Unfortunately, Mayor Fox refuses to respond to any communication from the union.

The letter reads:

“It is troubling to say the least that you have ignored my communication to you on July 15, 2024. We have continually attempted to engage the Borough in good faith negotiations for a Successor Agreement which will be mutually beneficial to both parties. The lack of response from you is both disrespectful and just poor labor relations.

We remain available to negotiate on behalf of the Borough’s hard-working and dedicated employees.”

Click here to read the letter directly.

Update: July 15

On Friday, July 12th, Mayor Fox issued a statement about the state of Borough of Bradley Beach contract negotiations in his biweekly newsletter on the Bradley Beach website. This was in response to the lawn signs and online petition launched in early July.

In the newsletter, Mayor Fox claims “budgetary/financial constraints” and the upcoming fact-finding hearing as to why he has not moved forward with negotiations. “Fact-finding” is a lengthy and costly process with the New Jersey Public Employment Relations Commission involving hearings, legal briefings, and financial analysis. The “Fact-finder” then issues recommendations for a new contract which is not binding on the parties. The borough is choosing to engage in this costly process at taxpayer expense rather than negotiate a fair contract with its employees.

Let it be clear that Mayor Fox could absolutely negotiate before, during, and after the fact-finding process begins in mid-August but chooses not to.

President Daniel Ross, Jr. sent a letter to Mayor Larry Fox addressing his statement:

“In response to your latest UFCW Contract Update, I find your characterization of the events that have unfolded over the last 19 months extremely misleading. On December 1, 2022, the Borough of Bradley Beach set the tone of these negotiations by presenting an 8-page document that contained extremely disrespectful proposals designed to reduce or eliminate current benefits enjoyed by dedicated and hard-working UFCW members that serve the community. It was made clear then and remains true today, this is unacceptable. Our committee only had a short list of proposals to address existing workplace issues and economic increases based off current trends and the cost of living.

Negotiations were slow and stalled because of the Borough’s refusal to withdraw proposals that would gut workplace benefits already earned by unit members. These items have previously been budgeted for by the Borough. Only after UFCW members made the stagnant negotiations public at the council meeting held on February 28, 2024, did you meet with the UFCW committee. I was present and we were prepared to negotiate a new and reasonable agreement. Unfortunately, the Borough was not willing to negotiate. You are correct that fact finding through PERC is scheduled for August 13, 2024. However, the Borough’s insistence on pursuing fact finding is just another stall tactic as it is by no means a legal impediment to negotiating a fair contract. A fact finder may only give suggestions as ultimately Borough Council must approve any agreement, hence the reason that we’ve requested Council to participate in negotiations like they have in years past.

Stop stalling and get back to the bargaining table. The UFCW committee is prepared to meet on the following dates: July 19, July 23, July 24 and July 25. Let me know what date(s) work for you.”

Letter to Mayor Fox, July 15, 2024
Letter sent to Borough of Bradley Beach Mayor Larry Fox, from UFCW Local 152 President Daniel Ross, Jr. on July 24, 2024.

Yes, you read that correctly: the people who keep Bradley Beach running by dispatching emergency personnel, cleaning trash and fixing infrastructure, and caring for the city’s day-to-day needs have been working tirelessly without a contract for more than 19 months!

These employees have not had a raise since the contract expired. As the cost of basic needs has risen, their compensation remains frozen. But it gets even worse. The Mayor’s bargaining team has proposed to gut much of the current contract.

Nicole from Borough of Bradley Beach with K9 Robbie.

“Police dispatchers work 24/7 to keep the residents safe — even without a contract! Please support us, we need your help!”

— Nicole, Shop Steward and Dispatcher, pictured with K-9 Robbie

Falling on Deaf Ears

UFCW Local 152 President Dan Ross, Jr. attended a recent Borough of Bradley Beach Council meeting to appeal to the council regarding the Borough’s injustice.

“This union negotiates hundreds of labor agreements on behalf of our members and finds the Borough’s actions disrespectful to hardworking employees and in bad faith,” President Ross said. “This is unacceptable! Your employees deserve better.”

While all of the remaining Council Members are sympathetic and supportive of the Borough’s workers, Mayor Larry Fox refused to let them be involved in the negotiation process.

Taxpayers Pay

An OPRA (Open Public Records Act) request revealed the Borough’s outside legal counsel has already billed an outrageous sum for these stalled negotiations — in excess of $35,000!

Instead of fighting against the people living and working in the community, wouldn’t these taxpayer funds be better spent actually bargaining a contract?

Michele from Borough of Bradley Beach working.

“Borough employees have not lowered our standards one bit. Despite the financial hardships many of us now face, we continue to provide the same excellent service to Bradley Beach residents, contractors, and visitors. That speaks to our character and dedication to this town, and the governing body’s failure to acknowledge that shows a complete lack of respect for us and a disregard for our wellbeing.”

-Michele, Shop Steward and Deputy Municipal Clerk

Support Us

Please support these workers at the Borough of Bradley Beach in their fight to get a contract.

Sign our MoveOn Petition and tell Mayor Larry Fox to negotiate a contract NOW!

With pressure from the community, we will ensure Mayor Larry Fox will not ignore us any longer.

Please share this with your friends and family.

MoveOn campaign screenshot for Bradley Beach Workers

Bradley Beach Workers Are Members of Your Community

Contact

UFCW Local 152 proudly represents about 14,000 members in 4 states, including these workers at Borough of Bradley Beach fighting for a contract.

If you have any questions, please call the union office at 888-564-6152.

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