Twitter janitors terminated; Social media platform faces collusion, censorship allegations

BySuzanne Phan KGO logo
Thursday, December 8, 2022
Twitter fires union janitors and faces collusion, censorship claims
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Janitors at Twitter say they were terminated. It comes as the social media platform faces separate allegations of collusion and censorship.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Janitors at Twitter say they were terminated by right before the holidays. Today, they protested outside Twitter headquarters.

It comes as the social media platform faces separate allegations of collusion and censorship.

"This is against big tech and it's collusion with the government," said Rogan O'Handley, a conservative speaker and attorney. O'Handley says he was unfairly suspended from Twitter in February 2021 for election misinformation.

O'Handley talked about the first tweet that got red-flagged. It was a comment on the 2020 election.

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"I said election fraud is rampant nationwide, especially in California. I said there's no voter I-D here. So, I said we need to conduct audits," said O'Handley.

Twitter suspended O'Handley after his "fifth strike."

His lawsuit against Twitter, the California Secretary of State, and others was dismissed.

So, O'Handley took it to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals today. Now, he waits for a decision.

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"I want my Twitter profile restored, and I want tens and thousands of other Twitter profiles restored that were unrightfully suspended by Twitter in collusion with the government. We need to see how deep this goes," O'Handley said.

"It's not the government's job to be policeman for Twitter," said O'Handley's attorney, Ron Coleman with the Dillon Law Group.

Also today, ABC7 News heard from union janitors at Twitter who are now out of a job and now on the street protesting.

"Our members voted to call for a strike on Monday at 6 in the morning," said Olga Miranda with SEIU Local 87.

Members were striking for better pay and job protections all day Monday, according to SEIU Local 87.

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Monday evening, they learned from their employer, Flagship, that Twitter decided to terminate all 48 union janitors that work there.

"What they are saying is we don't need union janitors at this time anymore," Miranda said.

Members say what really stings is that they were considered essential workers during the pandemic.

"All of our families are trying to figure out how we will pay our rent, how will we pay our mortgages," Miranda said.

"They are in there doing their jobs, so we all have clean offices to go to and clean bathrooms, and they deserve to be treated with basic dignity. And yeah, now, Elon Musk is treating them like garbage," said Senator Scott Wiener.

ABC7 News reached out to Twitter for comment but have not heard back.

If you're on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live