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Executive Vice-President Sokunbi Olufemi, 57, has lived in Staten Island for the last 20 years, but he’s originally from Nigeria, where he taught high school. The father of three became a traffic agent in 2001—and he’s still on the job, splitting the workweek between his new union responsibilities and the boulevards of Queens. “It makes me want to fight for the members even more because I’m still living the experience,” he says. In addition to securing a fair contract for members, Olufemi hopes traffic agents will also regain the power to issue moving violations. “Motorists used to respect us,” he says. “We can only bark, we cannot bite. So, we get no respect from the public.”
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