Philly Boss Removed, Local in Trusteeship

IBT Local 115 in Philadelphia, which is run by the “powerful” boss of the Pa. Conference of Teamsters — John P. Morris, was put into trusteeship Nov. 15 by IBT. IBT boss James P. Hoffa cited allegations of abuse of members’ rights and failure to protect union finances as reasons for the takeover. Morris — who was involved in the beating of Clinton-protester Don Adams last year — was removed from his position as Local 115’s secretary-treasurer. The trusteeship notice cited numerous examples of abuse including: intimidation and assault of members; weapons purchases; member surveillance; failure to enforce collective bargaining agreements; and operation of the local for the personal benefit of Morris and his family.

The notice stated that Local 115 bosses used union resources to create a climate of fear and intimidation among members, including the assault of at least three members. Union funds were allegedly used for the purchase of two shotguns, 20 stun guns, a supply of pepper spray, and paramilitary gear. Morris also allegedly colluded with employers to terminate and suspend members from employment and maintained various companies that only hired individuals who demonstrated their loyalty to Morris. IBT also alleged that Morris — who collected union salaries for several different positions of $184,423 last year — used local members to do home and car repairs at the expense of their employers. [BNA 11/16/99]