Union talk at library more than whisper

A story on labour troubles in FL.

Nonprofessional employees at the Orange County Library System are again trying to form a union.\"It\'s just been really difficult [at the library],\" said Sandi Rogers, an audio-visual clerk. \"It\'s very bitter and very divisive.\"

For the past two weeks, union representatives have been distributing a petition among the 180-plus support staff at the downtown library and 12 branches.
\"At the time I felt my loyalty was to the library. But I\'ve now seen how the administration has started pitting the support staff against the professional staff,\" she said.

The workers are also unhappy about a salary freeze that was imposed in 1996 for several employees. That came after the library administration reviewed salaries of all its employees and determined that some were being paid too much.

Dorothy Field, director of the Orange County Library System, said the library also raised the salaries of many workers who were making less.

She said 16 of those employees whose pay was frozen are eligible for merit increases this year.

Tonia Hinkle, a division administrative clerk who has worked at the library for more than seven years, said managers are fair and reasonable with employees.

\"From what I\'ve heard they\'re [union supporters] being given misinformation. Some employees are disappointed, and some are very bitter, and they believe they will get more money by joining a union,\" she said.