United Grain Lockout Turning Nasty: Richard Read of the Oregonian reports that this morning, United Grain released a security video showing a hooded and masked man pouring "foul-smelling liquids," believed to be urine, into manager John Lindgren’s vehicle. Lindgren filed a police report, alleging that members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, were behind the deed. This would at first blush seem far-fetched, but it must be remembered that United Grain has locked out ILWU members at its Vancouver, WA facility for over a year.
The lockout and resulting tension have been escalating for some time. The Seattle Regional Director of the National Labor Relations Board has accused both sides of various misdeeds during the work stoppage, alleging in particular that union members have threatened to assault certain managers’ children.
Care Facility Workers Allege Terminations After Union Meeting: John Mills and Christopher Zoladz of WZZM report that yesterday, protesters took to the streets outside of the Muskegon Family Care Facility in Muskegon Heights, MI after allegations surfaced that several former employees were terminated after meeting with a labor union. The 10 employees whose jobs were eliminated are believed to have met with a representative of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) late last month. Less than a week after the meeting was held, attendees received notices in the mail that the company was "realigning," which resulted in jobs being eliminated. AFSCME has filed charges with the National Labor Relations Board over the job losses.
Culinary Union Debates Strike Vote: Hannah Dreir of Bloomberg Businessweek writes that members of the Culinary Union in Las Vegas, NV are debating whether to authorize union leaders to initiate a strike. The union has been negotiating with twelve separate casinos in the Las Vegas area for almost 9 months regarding contracts that would cover over 6,000 employees. Currently, a strike authorization vote is set for late this month. However, previous votes have been postponed twice before, so there is no guarantee the vote will take place. We will keep you posted as negotiations continue.