THANKSGIVING WEEKEND: Traffic | Travel Guide | Weather | Holiday Guide | Mall Hours

Ardmore Coffee Shop Goes Toe-To-Toe With Philadelphia Carpenters Union

ARDMORE (CBS) — A mom and pop coffee shop is going toe to toe with one of the Philadelphia Carpenters Union. The battle has been escalating since March, when union members began protesting the merchants decision to hire non-union workers to build a second a shop in Center City. 

Milkboys co-owner Jamie Lokedoff says the carpenters union didn’t take kindly to seeing non-union contractors building a second Milkboys in center city.

“We always anticipated they were gonna show downtown, we never thought that they were gonna show up in Ardmore,” said Lokedoff.

The Carpenters tacked up a sign and have been handing out leaflets reading “shame on Milkboy.” Recently, though, Lokedoff and his partner, Tommy Joyner, struck back with humor.

“Our first move was to sell these t-shirts that said ‘shame on milkboy.’ Those t-shirts sold out just like that. And then they changed their sign to ‘milkboy coffee hurts our community.’ So we changed our t-shirt to say ‘menace to Ardmore.'”

Lokedoff concedes that the campaign has impacted their bottom line. Pat Gillespie, head of the Building and Trades Council says the carpenters won’t let up because there’s much more at stake.

“It’s just part of the spiraling down into this race to the bottom that everyone seems to be caught up in. No one who works for wages in the last ten years has actually realized a raise in pay.”

Reported by Paul Kurtz, KYW Newsradio

Top Content On CBSPhilly

More from Paul Kurtz
  • Michael David Kittell

    This is the latest attempt to destroy the American way of life. Unions are being demonized all over the country by greed-heads like Joyner and Lokedoff. Their coffee house is run by part time minimum wage slaves and their best entertainment is performed by unpaid amateurs at the open mics, who are then enticed to book overpriced studio time at Milkboy’s studio. The Unions don’t have any more clout in Philly despite what another poster wrote. It is all straight-out zoning and permit bribes and the usual mobbed-up stuff

  • Voolfie

    Don’t be surprised if ‘Milkboys’ suffers unexplained and/or unreasonable delays in getting necessary permits and licenses. The city is run by the unions and they all stick together.

  • Jake Jeeter

    Hooray to the coffee shop. Trades unions are synonymous with organized crime. I employ many many many people and always look for the best and brightest, which always means independent, free-thinking (non-union) workers. It has to be about 5 years since a union card crossed any of my job sites, and hopefully many many more into the future.

  • smuker

    someone on this planet enlighten me as to the benefits of hiring some union thug rats to do work for anyone?? they are all backed by crime syndicates. I guess that’s why I should watch out as to whom I should hire , in fear of being “kneecapped by these thug union rats.

    • realist

      Yes, having someone hang up a flyer about you equals getting “kneecapped.” If you’re a crybaby.

  • Patti M.

    I’m really tired if the behavior of unions today. I mean enough already with the giant rats. Recognizing that this is an emotionally charged issue, I just want to hear someone explain to me, in a calm, honest manner:
    I know why unions were created and what purpose they had- but what does hiring union labor in today’s world give to a business? Why should these small businesses choose union vs independent contractors? I believe there are silly rules w/union workers (at PA convention center you cannot plug in your own extension cord?) and higher cost. But what benefit am I missing?

  • UnionsStink

    Union workers are nothing but lazy thugs. Good for Milkboy for exercising their AMERICAN right to hire any one they want. The owners of the Comcast building had to hire the Philadelphia Pipe fitters union to run water pipes into the back of the urinals in all the men’s rooms. The urinals are WATERLESS, but the thugs in that union complained and threatened lawsuits against the city. Unions were great once upon a time…

    • jim

      pipefitters do not run water pipes

  • Frank

    Dropped by the Ardmore location today after the radio mention on 1210. Not a single union weasel to be seen. “Menace” shirts not in stock, so I tossed in a fiver for the Paddy benefit.

    Union vermin can’t even keep a picket line going. Parasites all of them.

    • karv

      They were probably on a hard earned “break” like they always are. It is hard work telling people how hard you “work” and how great your “frat” is! Teamsters tried to bully their way into my workplace, we told them to go pound sand. Dying breed, finally. People just can’t afford to hire unions anymore, it is a waste of money and they no longer have it. You ran the well dry, selfish unions.

  • Barry

    I liked this story better when I read it in Philadelphia Weekly the other day…

  • Peter

    I wonder if the non-union workers building the coffee shop can afford a cup of coffee there on their non-union wages.

    • Peter

      The place seems kinda pretentious from, it’s web site. Whatever happened to a regular cup of coffee? Vegan cheesesteaks? Karimikui Peaberry Kenyan coffee with notes of blackberry, plum and raisin? LOL!!!!!!!!! The non-union guys definitely can’t afford this place. You will never see oe of these in the Northeast or South Philly. They belong on the Main Line.

      • Chris

        Peter, you obviously don’t know South Philly as that comment is completely wrong. Take a walk on Passyunk Ave sometime. BTW, since you don’t know the area, anything below South St is South Philly.

    • Peter

      Does anybody know if the non-union workers are legal immigrants? Are taxes being with-held on their pay? Or is it strictly cash under the table?

      • John Sebastion

        lazy union fool

  • Joyce Mountz

    the latest TV show, Body of Proof couldn’t afford to film in Philly………..the show is supposedly taking place in Philly but is filmed in Baltimore except for the outside pics…….
    The unions were the reason why….

  • Tim Yen

    The unions have overstayed their welcome. If there are workers willing to work for non-union wages, what does that say ? Union’s have inflated wage scales and have priced themselves out of the market. I will hire the workers who can do quality work for the lowest wages. Free market. Unions kill our state budget.

    • realist

      I can’t wait until all the grandchildren of the union haters are working 12 hour days at the age of 7 for 15 cents an hour. And then everyone goes, “OH, right, THAT’S why we had unions.”

      Humans have short memories.

      • Guess Who

        We have OSHA and other gov’t agencies now. We don’t need goonions for that anymore.

blog comments powered by Disqus
Taz Goes Big!
Download Now!

Listen Live