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As Ban Ki-moon Cut of 59 UN Jobs Stayed, Malcorra "Union Busting"?

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, February 28 – Eleven days ago, Inner City Press documented that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's chief of staff Susana Malcorra couldn't meet with the elected leadership of the UN Publishing, the Staff Union unit worst impacted by ill-preparation for Hurricane Sandy.

  But since then, Malcorra has worked around the elected leadership and met with other Publishing Section staff, including those not threatened post-Sandy, they tell Inner City Press.

  It is alleged this violates the letter or spirit of UN Staff Regulation 8.1 and, in essence, constitutes union busting by Ban Ki-moon's UN.  Inner City Press asked for a response at the noon birefing on February 28 and is still waiting.

  What Inner City Press has received is a letter from an official in the UN Department of Public Information complaining about the way Inner City Press reports -- click here for that.

  This UN seems to have little regard for the facts -- the reporting the UN complained shouldn't have been done was of a meeting to which the UN invited Inner City Press, which said openly "this is on the record."

  This UN seems to have little regard for the law -- its moves on the Publishing Section are now subject to a stay or "Suspension of Action" signed on February 22 by UNDT Judge Goolam Meeran, published here by Inner City Press:

"It would appear from the documents before the Tribunal that DGACM did not have the authority to undertake a restructuring exercise on a scale that would involve the deletion of 59 posts and the creation of 19 new ones as part of the budgetary approval originally provided by the General Assembly."

  On a resolution of the Staff of the Publishing Section, e-mails obtained and published by Inner City Press showed that Malcorra was rebuffed in a belated attempt to meet. This followed a January 24 Staff Union wide resolution expressing “no confidence” in Ban Ki-moon.

  While related to criticism of Ban's decision that 70% of $100 million in budget cuts must come from personnel costs or salary, the rift was worsened by Ban's reaction to the criticism.

  Inner City Press asked Ban about the opposition, and in the course of a lengthy and heartfelt January 22 answer, Ban used the word “selfish” for UN staff in New York.

  The next day Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesperson's office if they wanted to amend or explain the characterization. No, they said, Ban's stands behind it.

  Well, Inner City Press stands behind its reporting. Watch this site.

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