We were amused by the fanciful rendition of events of the wage theft protest that took place on June 3 at La Baguette presented by owners Carine and Olivier Vigy (Letters, 6/13/2014). Let's set the record straight. The Vigys had an employee who quit abruptly because he was frustrated by problems at the bakery. This upset the owners so they told him they would not give him his final paycheck. The worker came to the Workers' Rights Center to find out what he could do. We called La Baguette and spoke with both Olivier and Carine Vigy, and they confirmed that they would not pay the worker his wages because he did not give two weeks' notice. We explained they could not do this. They said they could and hung up.
A few weeks later the WRC staged a protest in front of the bakery. At the end of the protest we entered the restaurant to deliver a letter insisting that they pay their former employee. They had the check waiting for the worker and claimed they had had it there for three weeks. Oddly though it was dated from three days before. A worker should not have to go to these lengths just to get paid.
Patrick Hickey, Workers' Rights Center
Speaking as someone who was at the La Baguette picket, it is amazing what Olivier, the owner of La Baguette, has invented as his version of events that day. Here's what really happened.
We picketed on the public sidewalk across the parking lot from the bakery for about 45 minutes. Yes, we chanted and were no doubt loud enough for customers to hear; that was the point.
Olivier called the police on us while we were still on the public sidewalk, and they arrived on the scene just prior to most of us entering the store. The police did not prevent us from entering, but did ask us to leave after we entered, and we did leave once the paycheck had been handed over.
There was lots of shouting. And some cursing. Every bit of it came from the mouth of Olivier himself. On our side, all of us were quiet and respectful. Patrick of the WRC was firm but calm in dealing with Olivier to get the worker's paycheck.
To my knowledge, none of the protesters returned inside and apologized afterwards. We had nothing to apologize for, and none of us would have wanted to face Olivier again anyway.