Local union members protest inclusion of ex-leader - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Local union members protest inclusion of ex-leader

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Protesters gathered outside of United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 135 in Mission Valley Tuesday to announce that some organized labor leaders are withdrawing from the San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council to form a new organization called the San Diego Working Families Council. 

Members say they are against the inclusion of former Labor Council President Mickey Kasparian, who has been accused of sexual harassment and gender discrimination. The current lawsuits involving Kasparian are allegations at this point. 

CBS News 8's Gene Kang asked Kasparian during a new conference held Tuesday about the protesters' concerns.

Gene: "What do you have to say to the protesters outside?"

Kasparian: "We are not going to address this at this press conference. It's about working families and what's going on outside is a side show."

A former union member says their message is about caring for hard working families and people of color. 

"Mickey is a fraud and has only a self-serving interest. He doesn't care about the working people and has a political agenda for personal use." Debbie Principe, Former Union Member said.

Labor leaders say there was a rift and that's why they're separating. 

Kasparian says he's received several phone calls from local politicians congratulating him on the formation of the new organization and that they're focusing on a progressive agenda.

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