Mammoliti allegations sleeping city worker

Coun. Giorgio Mammoliti claims this photograph shows a weight-room employee at a city community centre sleeping while on the job. The union for rec centre staff says it would violate city policy for Mammoliti to snap a pics inside a community centre. (Coun. Giorgio Mammoliti)

Toronto Coun. Giorgio Mammoliti says unionized city workers have too much power over their managers and remained unapologetic about his decision to release a photo that appears to show a city recreation centre worker sleeping at his desk.

At a news conference Monday, Mammoliti said the photo, which caused a furor after it was made public last week, illustrates the poor public service he says is endemic at the recreation centre and other city-run facilities..

"My picture was really the last straw for me as a politician," he said. "The level of service at the city of Toronto, in all departments, needs to improve."

The photo, snapped by Mammoliti and passed on to Mayor Rob Ford, was taken in the weight room of the Carmine Stefano Community Centre, which also houses Mammoliti's constituency office.

Ford has demanded both the worker and his manager be fired if the employee was asleep on the job. The union contends the worker was on a break and is entitled to due process of an investigation that is now underway.

"It's much bigger than an individual taking a snooze or a break," said Mammolit. "This is about how the city does its job now. I think we're lax and we need to do a better job of managing.

"I believe that our unions … are running the city. I'm frustrated because we can't manage anymore. Our employees are managing themselves."

Mammoliti said he's gathered complaints about other "very serious allegations of employee misbehaviour" at the rec centre.