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Wed Sep 30, 2015, 09:41 PM

USW and Sherwin Alumina clash over health care, attempt to end 11-month lockout

GREGORY, TEXAS – Sherwin Alumina officials and union members compared proposals for new contract components last week, but neither party liked what was on the table, so 450 workers remain locked out of the facility.

Leaders from the Gregory company met with United Steelworkers representatives in Pittsburgh – where USW’s headquarters is located – to resume bargaining in an attempt to end an 11-month lockout. The parties have been attempting to construct a new contract since July 8, 2014, after the previous contract between the company and its workers expired Sept. 30, 2014.

“The company remains committed to bargaining in good faith on all issues with the union, and currently has on the table a comprehensive proposal that will provide all full-time employees with approximately $7,000 to $9,000 in wage increases over the five-year term of the contract,” said John Vasquez, Sherwin administration director, in a statement released by the company last week.

The company’s proposal is valued at approximately $6 million over the term of the contract and allows for continued health care for current employees when they retire until they reach age 65 and provides for a per-hour contribution toward retiree health care after age 65, according to the statement.


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