In what farmworkers fear is a case of stepped-up government harassment and intimidation, a California Deputy Attorney General was caught photographing protesters outside a state courthouse.
Deputy Attorney General Benjamin Glickman took photos or videos of Pick Justice protesters who opposed the state’s attempt to coerce them into a contract with the United Farm Workers (UFW). The September 5, 2017 incident took place outside the California Supreme Court.
Glickman is seen in a Pick Justice video, posted on Instagram. Stills from the Pick Justice video show Glickman taking pictures or videos of the faces of the protesters until a colleague apparently told him to stop.
While imaging the Pick Justice protesters, Glickman stood about three feet away from UFW spokesman Marc Grossman, who can be seen profiled in a blue shirt.
Glickman is part of the state legal team helping the Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB) force a UFW contract on Gerawan farmworkers.
“Workers within our group were intimidated when they saw Glickman doing this and are fearful of more retribution from the ALRB and the UFW,” said Pick Justice spokesman Jesse Rojas.
Attorney General’s office has been against farmworkers
The farmworker protest occurred during opening arguments in a lawsuit about whether or not the state and UFW have the right to force workers into a contract while denying them the right to have input into the terms, and denying them the right to vote on the final agreement.
Pick Justice organized the protest. The California Attorney General’s office has joined the effort to deny farmworkers their rights.
The Attorney General represents the state Agricultural Labor Relations Board and the interests of the UFW in their joint attempt to prevent Gerawan farmworkers’ November 2013 votes from being counted. During that ALRB-supervised election four years ago, Gerawan workers voted overwhelmingly to de-certify the UFW.
The ALRB has spent at least $10,000,000 in taxpayer dollars to prevent the counting of the votes – and thereby to keep the UFW as the “legal” collective bargaining representative of Gerawan workers.