A group of roofing workers are on strike against the company in charge of installing a new green roof on the Target Center in Minneapolis.
The workers claim that Fridley-based Stock Roofing Company is engaging in unfair labor practices. They charge that roofers have been paid unfairly low wages, have been harassed and have been forced to work without proper safety gear.
Stock Roofing, a subsidiary of Tecta America, has issued a press release denying the allegations.
"We take every precaution to be sure that work is being performed in accordance with industry safety practices, and actually exceed requirements in most cases," said Mark Santacrose, Tecta America President and CEO, in the release.
A call placed to Stock Roofing Company president Warren Stock was not immediately returned.
A representative of Roofers and Waterproofers Union Local 96 says the company has not taken their complaints seriously. Union Business Representative Pete Jaworski says workers are being intimidated and harassed on the job.
"We've heard that one guy was let go because he went down to get a drink of water ... because they didn't have water on the site for these guys," he said.
Jaworski also charges that the conditions for the workers are unsafe. And he says the Union has video that shows the company failed to meet proper safety standards.
"These guys are working up there in the dark," Jaworski said. "They got 18 or 19 people up their tearing off ballast and the pavers that hold the roof down ... And they were throwing them down. The people aren't tied off. They had these barriers, but they weren't up to the standard OHSA codes."
Jaworski says the strike will be held for two days, then workers will continue the work on the roof. But he says the Union will continue seeking legal action.
Jaworski says Local 96 has filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board and has asked the Occupational Health and Safety Administration to investigate their complaints.