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Broadway faces potential holiday labor headache

The Associated Press, Wednesday, December 12, 2012, 9:07am (PST)

NEW YORK (AP) — A union representing hundreds of Broadway porters and cleaners plans to vote on whether to authorize their leadership to call a strike, potentially throwing a wrench into a busy holiday season around Times Square.

Members of the 250-person 32BJ SEIU union are to rally Wednesday afternoon in front of The Broadway League, which represents producers and theater owners, to demand improved access to health care and other benefits.

Any vote would affect 32 of Broadway's 40 theaters.

Many of the people who do Broadway's most unglamorous work — hauling equipment, running the elevators, tiding bathrooms and sweeping the theaters — must work for several weeks before their health coverage kicks in. The union wants that coverage to start when employees begin work.

The League had no immediate response.

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