Thursday, July 2, 2009

UFCW Gets Contract at Massive Pork Plant

The plant had been a target of the United Food & Commercial Workers' union for more than 15 years.

It had been the site of mass rallies, a corporate campaign of negative publicity, community and clergy activism...all aimed at getting more than 4,000 workers to pay union dues (up to an estimated $1.1 million per year).

Finally, last December, the UFCW and their henchmen succeeded in getting voted into Smithfield's massive Tar Heel (NC) pork-processing plant by a mere 52% of the ballots cast.

Now, the UFCW has negotiated its first contract at the plant, scoring an obvious victory: the ability to collect union dues from the workers.

In the meantime, what did the union do for the workers? Accorting to this press report, the UFCW negotiated the same health care package workers had before unionization, the same retirement package workers had before unionization, a minor increase in company-paid vacation and...

...wait for it...


...wait for it...


Wage increases that amount to $0.37 per hour for the next four years!

Oh yeah. The UFCW also negotiated a grievance procedure into the contract. However, since unions have the legal right to deny workers individual grievances, we don't consider this a major accomplishment.

And for that, the UFCW gets more than a million a year in union dues!

"We are living in historic times right now," said Terry Slaughter (no pun intended), one of the pro-UFCW workers.

Apparently, putting lipstick on a pig in North Carolina is different than putting lipstick on a pig elsewhere, than it may indeed be historic.

For more about the United Food & Commercial Workers, go to 1-888-NO-UNION.COM's profile on the UFCW here.

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