Union members to talk to consumers at gas stations about safety issues in contract negotiations
Members of the United Steelworkers (USW) union who work at oil refineries around the country are planning a National Day of Action for Safe Refineries and Good Jobs on January 21. Members in refinery communities around the country plan to visit gas stations and distribute handbills to drivers on the importance of refinery safety in the ongoing round of contract negotiations.
The USW represents more than 30,000 workers in the oil sector. Most labor agreements are set to expire Feb. 1 at 12:01 a.m. Across the country, health and safety is a major issue on the bargaining table. In 2009 the Steelworkers proposed significant changes to health and safety language at the bargaining table, but the industry rebuffed the demands.
The Steelworkers say that health and safety is a primary issue in this round of negotiations. “Since the last time we sat down to bargain with the oil industry three years ago, 18 oil workers have died on the job,” says Gary Beevers, the Steelworkers’ International Vice President for Oil Bargaining. “That’s unacceptable. This time around we expect to see some real, enforceable improvements on health and safety.”
Actions are planned in Texas, Louisiana, Utah, California, Washington, Pennsylvania, and other locations around the country ... more