Hostess Sues Unions, Seeks Order Preventing Picketing, Interference With Business

by Tara Arick on November 19, 2012 · 0 comments

in Bankruptcy,Labor and Employment Law

- From LexisNexis® Mealey’s™ Daily Legal News.

Bankrupt Hostess Brands Inc. on Nov. 12 filed a complaint in Pennsylvania state court seeking compensatory damages and injunctive relief related to mass picketing by unionized workers at Hostess’ facilities in Philadelphia (Hostess Brands Inc. v. Bakery, Confectionary, Tobacco and Grain Millers International AFL-CIO, et al., No. n/a, Pa. Comm. Pls., Philadelphia Co.).

Hostess filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York on Jan. 11.

Union Activity

Hostess sued the Bakery, Confectionary, Tobacco and Grain Millers International AFL-CIO (BCTGM) and the Local 6 of the BCTGM, Frank Hurt, Barry Fields and Hank McKay in the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas.

Hurt is the president of the international division of BCTGM. Fields is the president and business manager of Local 6, and McKay is the vice president of Local 6.

Hostess argues that the defendants have organized and unlawfully picketed at the company’s Philadelphia plant. The defendants are liable for willfully obstructing and blocking the entrances to the Philadelphia bakery, Hostess contends.

As a result, Hostess’ business has been interrupted and the defendants have unlawfully assumed and exercised control over the bakery, Hostess argues.

Damage ‘Irreparable’

Hostess maintains that it has “suffered and will continue to suffer great and irreparable damages,” the amount of which cannot be determined at present.

Consequently, Hostess seeks an order from the Court of Common Pleas restraining the BCTGM, the Local 6, Hurt, Fields and McKay from interfering with the ingress and egress from the bakery, as well as an order prohibiting them from congregating in large crowds at or near the bakery.

Moreover, Hostess argues that the defendants should be prevented from using force of numbers, violence, coercion, threats, abusive language or other unlawful means to intimidate or otherwise interfere with any of Hostess’ employees when they enter or exit any of the company’s facilities.

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