The OPP Anti-Racket Criminal Investigation
Bureau located outside London is currently reviewing allegations
made against the Labourers' International Union Local 1089, in
Sarnia, said Det. Sgt. Terry Rorke recently.
Nothing has yet to been determined and the
review could take up to a month, said Rorke. The police review
could lead to a criminal investigation if substantial evidence
has been found. Rorke could not say what the bureau is reviewing
or who made the allegations that led to the review for fear of
influencing the review.
Recently, several union members demonstrated
outside the union hall to protest what they call undemocratic
union practices. Laura Portiss organized the demonstration.
It was Laura's first time demonstrating at
the union hall.
Her father Joe has been a union member for
over 25 years.
Last spring, Joe took part in a demonstration
outside the hall.
In 1983, Joe Portiss was granted an order
from the Ontario Labour Relations Board for a complaint he made
to the board about the union hall's unfair hiring hall practices.
Since then, Laura has continued to gather
documents to prove allegations that the union's executive is defrauding
members of benefit money and discriminating against potential
Robert Leone, business manager of Local 1089, said the union plans to file a defamation and harassment case against the family.