Two union members in Baltimore decided to strike back at Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake over the city’s plans to close fire companies. Their weapon of choice: toilet paper. The members posted online pictures of her face on toilet paper; they added a picture of Fire Chief James Clack in a toilet as well. The union president, Rick Hoffman, has already apologized to both Clack and Rawlings-Blake. The members will be disciplined.
Nonetheless, the posting highlighted strains between union members, union leadership, and governmental actors who have been forced by budgetary concerns to cut into fire and police services across the country. As more and more cities verge on bankruptcy, relations with public sector unions are sure to grow strained.