Boston's Teamsters Local 25 are firing back against allegations that they verbally attacked the Top Chef crew and host Padma Lakshmi in June. Yesterday, Deadline reported that the Teamsters were upset that the reality competition show had hired local production assistants to drive "cast and crew vehicles" instead of the longstanding union. According to an unnamed Top Chef crew member, the Teamsters decided to picket outside of a restaurant in Milton, Mass. where scenes for the show were being filmed.
The Teamsters allegedly shouted "racist, sexist, and homophobic threats" and screamed at Lakshmi saying, "You bitch! You slut! We're gonna get you!" Boston.com writes that although a local deputy police chief confirmed the situation to Deadline, the Teamsters have put out a statement calling the incident "fiction at best." The statement adds that "If the allegations were true Milton Police would have taken appropriate action." Go, read the statement in full below:
The Teamsters Local 25 Statement
"Teamsters Local 25 for the last eight years has been a vital part in the success of the film industry in Massachusetts. We continue to support the industry and all the jobs that are created directly and indirectly. The Top Chef situation as it is written is fiction at best. As a union, we have the right to lawfully demonstrate and protest the filming of non-union non-Massachusetts workers. We have fought long and hard to protect our members, their livelihoods and will continue to do so. If the allegations were true Milton Police would have taken appropriate action. Again, Teamsters Local 25 will continue to be vigilant and hold employers accountable when it comes to making sure area standards are upheld, but more importantly to respect the workers that are responsible for their success and prosperity."
· Boston's Teamsters and the 'Top Chef' Crew [Boston.com]
· Was Padma Lakshmi Attacked by the Boston Teamsters? [-E-]
· Boston Teamsters Statement [Facebook]
· All Top Chef Coverage on Eater [-E-]