Dianne Morales' bid to be NYC mayor continues despite staff walkout

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Progressive New York City mayoral candidate Dianne Morales said her campaign is “moving forward” with a union contract on Tuesday after dozens of her campaign staff went on strike over alleged unfair pay and other issues last week.

“I want the best for ALL my staff – those that have been organizing for the union and those who have continued working. I’m looking forward to signing a union contract with my staff as I continue the work of building a city that works for everyone – not just the wealthy,” she wrote on Twitter.

“The campaign is moving forward, driven by the same vision that led me to enter this race – one where all New Yorkers are able to live in dignity. I look forward to seeing you on the campaign trail and the debate on Wednesday,” Morales continued.

However, some ex-staffers took issue with Morales’s version of events.

“It’s Tuesday and our union is still without our four leaders who Dianne has refused to reinstate. They are sharing their story. Black women were harmed, pass it on,” a group calling themselves Mayorales Union wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.

“We are the Union 4: the four women terminated by Dianne Morales on May 27th. We are young women, three of whom are Black Caribbean immigrant women, and one who is a 20 year-old white woman,” they said in a statement. “We were hired to ensure safe and inclusive spaces for Black and Brown organizers, women, and queer folks. Eventually, we were alerted to instances of racial aggressions, sexual harassment, exploitation, and countless other unaddressed harms.”

Morales campaign staffers banded together last week and accused her of underpaying them. Roughly 40 people marched to the campaign office with signs on Friday, according to Spectrum News.

“The messiness of this campaign lies solely with the leader who failed to take meaningful action,” Nia Evans, a former Morales campaign staffer, said according to Spectrum News.

Another staffer, Madia Semmar, told the local cable news channel that the campaign “ran on dysfunction.”

Fog shrouds lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City as pigeons stand on a railing in the rain on May 30, 2021 in Jersey City, New Jersey. (Photo by Gary Hershorn/Getty Images)

“I came here to do one role, I almost immediately got promoted and did not get a pay raise for that role,” Semmar said according to Spectrum News, “the white man that was working under me ended up making more money than me.” 

Meanwhile, Morales herself appeared to claim she was being targeted because she is a woman of color.

“I am the daughter of a union family. I have managed real union shops. Organizing is in my blood; union busting is not. I am also an executive that has made decisions that I stand by, even if they don’t live up to the purity test so often applied to women of color in leadership,” Morales wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.

Morales’s campaign has received more than $3.6 million in public funds through the city’s matching program, according to Spectrum News. 

Morales is trailing most of her rivals including Andrew Yang, Scott Stringer and Maya Wiley in the polls, according to recent polls from Politico, PIX11 News/Emerson College and the Manhattan Institute.

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

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