Union protests Campus Pizza

Disgruntled laborers who declined to give their names or comment hold up a sign outside outside Campus Pizza on Washington Ave reading, Shame on Campus Pizza.

Stephen Maturen

Disgruntled laborers who declined to give their names or comment hold up a sign outside outside Campus Pizza on Washington Ave reading, “Shame on Campus Pizza.”

Despite the cold, three men spent Wednesday standing outside Campus Pizza , holding a 20-foot sign reading âÄúShame on Campus Pizza.âÄù The men were from the North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters âÄî the same union that protested drywall work done by Friedges Drywall in November at Campus Pizza. The men said they couldnâÄôt explain the dispute due to an ongoing lawsuit, but they handed out a flier that stated their case. The dispute hasnâÄôt changed since November; Campus Pizza hired a non-union sub-contractor, Friedges Drywall, to do the drywall in their new location. However, the work has been done for weeks, and the unionâÄôs sign says nothing about Friedges or drywall. The unionâÄôs flier notes that Friedges Drywall is lowering labor standards and claims Campus Pizza should be obligated to maintain labor standards. Jim Rosvold, the owner of Campus Pizza, said there was an independent bidding process, and the unionâÄôs bid was about 20 percent higher than the one he chose. He said although the protesters were outside all last week, Campus Pizza has a loyal fan base, and his business hasnâÄôt been affected. âÄúI wish they would have had a more competitive bid, rather than spending money on this tactic,âÄù Rosvold said. Campus Pizza is not the only target of the North Central States Regional Council of CarpentersâÄô protests. Dr. Brent Cataldo, a dentist with a practice in Plymouth, said the council has had people holding signs outside of both his office and in his Maple Grove neighborhood for the past year, with the promise that it will continue for another year. He has spoken with lawyers, who have told him that âÄúshame on youâÄù is not harassment, so thereâÄôs not anything he can do about the protests, Cataldo said. The protests havenâÄôt hurt CataldoâÄôs practice either. He said heâÄôs gotten eight or nine new patients that came in specifically to ask about the sign. Cataldo is being targeted by the union for reasons similar to Campus Pizza. The union says itâÄôs his responsibility to review the labor standards of sub-contractors, he said. In another case, RichfieldâÄôs school district was required by law to make sure contractors they hired pay a competitive wage, Michael Schwarts, the districtâÄôs business manager , said. Despite the districtâÄôs conclusion that FriedgesâÄô practices were fair, the union protested outside while work was going on at the high school last fall.