KPFA Roiled By Volunteer's Arrest
September 2, 2008 at 5:19 AM (PT)
PACIFICA RADIO noncommercial KPFA/BERKELEY-SAN FRANCISCO volunteer NADRA FOSTER was arrested and forcibly removed from the station as part of a protest against management on AUGUST 20th, and the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE reports that the incident has raised unrest at the station.
FOSTER, who is pregnant, was arrested by at least six officers, who had to use force to get her out of the facility; she had been banned from KPFA in MAY for bringing her children to work, using company equipment to print personal documents, and making personal phone calls. She was charged with five misdemeanors, including trespassing, resisting arrest and battery, with a pretrial hearing set for SEPTEMBER 22nd. The volunteer group has been battling management over what they claim is the network's move towards being more corporate and less a "voice of dissent," while also concerned that management wants to reduce the number of volunteers.
"When management marginalized the council, that disenfranchised the unpaid staff and it has grown increasingly worse," paid Producer DENNIS BERNSTEIN told the CHRONICLE. "There is now a sense the unpaid staff isn't welcome and there is a quest to move to a more professional NPR-type station, which seems to exclude what has been the heart of KPFA."