UE NEWS Updates


Workers Win Wage, Benefit Gains in Second UE Contract at Stepan

February 10, 2009

UE Local 155 members at the Stepan Company, a chemical manufacturer, voted to approve, on December 12, the company’s final offer for a new three-year agreement. The new contract increased wages by 2.75 percent (retroactive to November 28), and will bring two additional raises of 2.5 percent each on November 28, 2009 and 2010. Workers in the classification of blended operators received an additional 50 cent and hour equity increase. The average hourly wage prior to the new agreement was $27.24.

Bailed-Out Bank Helps Stir Business Opposition to EFCA

January 29, 2009

Not only are recipients of the federal bank bailout using some of that money to pay big executive bonuses and to buy corporate jets. Some of them are also using that money – which is really our money – to attack unions and organize business opposition (including soliciting political contributions) against the Employee Free Choice Act, a bill that would make it easier for workers to organize.

UE Honored as "Most Valuable Union" by The Nation Magazine

January 5, 2009

In an article posted on its website on New Year’s Eve, The Nation, highly-respected weekly magazine on the political left, named the “Most Valuable Progressives of 2008." In this year-end round-up of exemplary activism, The Nation’s Washington correspondent John Nichols placed UE at the top of an impressive list of agents for positive change.

Local 150 Celebrates UFCW Organizing Win At North Carolina Meatpacking Plant

December 19, 2008

UE Local 150 members in North Carolina are celebrating a major victory for labor in that state. On December 10 and 11, culminating a 16-year organizing struggle, workers at Smithfield Foods' giant meatpacking plant in Tar Heel voted 2,041 to 1,879 to be represented by the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW). The plant, largest of its kind in the U.S., slaughters 32,000 hogs a day.

Local 234 Holds Line on Health Costs in Fairbanks Scales Contract

December 18, 2008

Members of UE Local 234 ratified a new three-year agreement on October 31, covering workers in both the factory and office bargaining units at Fairbanks Scales. The company had agreed to release members from work early, with pay, to attend the ratification meeting. In a somewhat unusual development, the company delivered its final offer after the members had gathered for the meeting and were waiting to vote. After a short discussion with the membership and the contract due to expire at midnight they voted by secret ballot to accept the company’s offer.

"Yes" Vote at Republic: Workers Get Pay, Plant Occupation Ends

December 10, 2008

After the conclusion of negotiations Wednesday evening, the membership of Local 1110, more than 200 workers, met in the plant cafeteria to hear and consider the tentative settlement that had been worked out by UE negotiators over the past three days.

The settlement was approved by a unanimous vote.

'We Did It!'

Following the vote, the UE members, led by Local President Armando Robles, marched out of the plant, chanting “Yes, we did!” in English and Spanish.



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