The shirt worn by members of the New York State Court Officers Association at a demonstration.

Italian-American associations and other ethnic groups joined Chief Judge Janet DiFiore in decrying a union’s decision to call the Office of Court Administration the Organized Crime Association.

See related article: DiFiore Calls on Union Official to Apologize for Attack on Her Italian Heritage

DiFiore wrote a letter to Court Officers Association President Dennis Quirk demanding a public apology. Quirk said the slogan, which was printed on T-shirts for an Oct. 23 protest, was not intended to be an ethnic slur against the chief judge, the first Italian-American to serve in that position.

It was a play on the words Office of Court Administration, he said.

But others didn’t see it that way. More than 40 leaders of Italian-American associations are writing a joint letter of protest. The Latino Judges Association, the Columbian Lawyers Association, the Franklin H. Williams Judicial Commission and the Richard C. Failla LGBTQ Commission have also expressed dismay at the union’s actions.