Six union leaders of American Apparel were terminated in Aug. by company management under the direction of CEO Paula Schneider due to the now famous piata protest, which occurred on August 19, 2015. The fired workers include Pascual Mateos, Fabelio Ajtun, Piedad Torres, Maribel Fabian, Cipriano Vilchis, and Angelica Serrano.  Three other union leaders were terminated a week prior for unspecified reasons. These were Stephanie Padilha dos Santos, Esmeralda Bermudez, and Maks Akters.
The protest used a piÒata figurine face of Schneider as political theatre protesting the gross incompetence and corruption of management. Several hundred workers participated in the protest organized by the union, General Brotherhood of Workers of American Apparel, which has signed up 3,000 employees into the union. The union has formally requested recognition from the company but has been ignored.
Free speech has definitely ended for the workers of American Apparel, declared Stephanie Padilha dos Santos, President of the General Brotherhood of Workers of American Apparel. These firings are clearly retaliation for the effective union organizing inside the company. Paula Schneider is completely disconnected from the cultural expression of immigrant workers in using a piata for political protest concluded Padilha dos Santos.
This is an iconic company that may be no more in a few short months, according to apparel industry experts, due to the current financial straits reported to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission by American Apparel executives recently.
The General Brotherhood of Workers of American Apparel plans more protests and informational picket-lines at retail stores to tell their story to company customers. ìThe Union wants American Apparel customers as allies in the workers fight to return founder Dov Charney to the helm of the company. He is the only one who can turn the company around to profitability, according to union trustee Nativo Lopez. For more information, contact Stephanie Padilha dos Santos (323) 690-6881 or Nativo Lopez (714) 423-4800.

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