Brooklyn Museum employees move to a union


Employees at one of New York City’s major museums have taken steps to form a union.

Attempting to organize this time Brooklyn Museum, Where a proposed union would represent a mix of full and part-time workers. The Technical, Office and Professional Union, Local 2110, UAW, filed a petition with the National Labor Relations Board on Tuesday seeking a vote on the union.

The proposed bargaining unit includes about 130 employees, said local chairman Maida Rosenstein. They include curators, patrons, editors and fundraisers, who have full-time salaried jobs; And part-time teachers, visitor service workers and gift shop employees, he said, may also be some others who are misclassified as independent contractors when they are technically part-time employees.

A patron of the museum, Natalya Swanson, who has participated in the organizing effort, said workers have a clear path to job security, salary equity and promotion, among other issues.

“People see many benefits of having a more democratic voice in the institution,” she said. “We believe that we have the ability to advance the circumstances for everyone in the workplace.”

In an email, the museum stated, “The Brooklyn Museum respects our employees’ right to consider and evaluate union representation and for a cooperative, fair and respectful process to achieve the best results for our employees.” Committed.”

The Brooklyn Museum, seen as one of New York City’s premier art institutions, is known for its socially progressive, topical, and sometimes provocative exhibits.

Last year, as many museums made public statements involving the protest or death of Black Lives Matter George floyd, The home page of the Brooklyn Museum, included a message that read: “We stand in solidarity with the black community. We stand against police brutality and institutional and structural racism. “

Recently opened show, “The Slipstream: Reflections, Resilience and Resistance in the Art of Our Time,” Its purpose is to examine power and consider the “confluence of devastating effects of pandemics, civil unrest across the United States, a presidential election, and uncontrolled climate change.”

As the epidemic prompted layoffs and furloughs in New York City museums, Brooklyn museum people were among the jobbers, Swanson said, though they did not know the exact number of employees affected by the layoffs.

If a new union is formed, it will not be the first in the Brooklyn Museum. Local 1502, District Council 37, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees already represent some of the workers there, including security guards, administrative assistants and protectors.

Last week, Whitney Museum staff Moved to form a union Along with Local 2110, which already represents workers at institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art, the New Museum and the New York Historical Society.

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