Uhrichsville, Ohio (WJER) - Uhrichsville’s mayor is addressing the city’s neutral stance on the OAPSE non-teaching staff strike happening at Claymont schools.
Mayor Rick Dorland says Uhrichsville police will not be arresting or citing substitute staff hired by the school district to continue daily operations, despite the city’s “strike-breaker” ordinance passed in the 1960’s. (he says similar ordinances have been declared unconstitutional in other jurisdictions, so he says enforcing their ordinance puts the city at risk of receiving a lawsuit.)
“Since then, there’s been other jurisdictions and other court districts that have ruled those type of ordinances unconstitutional. Even though it hasn’t been ruled unconstitutional in our court district, we still have to use a little bit of caution,” he says.
He says that ordinance was passed when it was common for strikes to become dangerous.
“The ordinance that the City of Uhrichsville has was passed back in 1967, and it had to do with strikebreakers, professional strikebreakers, and my opinion on that is, back then, strikes were really violent, not saying strikes today aren’t violent but back then they were notoriously violent,” he says. “I’m pretty sure that’s why the city fathers back then passed that ordinance to prevent that.”
Dorland addressed rumors that the Twin Cities police departments were enforcing their respective strike beaker ordinances.
“They are under the same interpretation as what we are. They are not arresting people. They are not charging people. My chief spoke to the Dennison chief the other day and he told him that. What’s being put out there that’s Dennison’s doing this. That is wrong. That is not true,” he says.
Law Director JJ Ong says they couldn’t issue any citations even if they wanted to because the replacements at this time are from the ESC and don’t meet the ordinance’s definition of professional strikebreakers.