Monday, March 30, 2009

NLRB says Republic Windows broke labor law

According to the United Electrical Workers (UE) website: The National Labor Relations Board issued a decision that the Republic Windows and Doors Company:

Illegally created an alter-ego company in Red Oak, Iowa in order to avoid its collective bargaining obligations with UE,

illegally shut down operations in Chicago and transferred work to Red Oak, Iowa without notice or bargaining with the Union,

illegally failed to provide information for bargaining or process grievances as required under the collective bargaining agreement.

The findings agree with the charges made by UE when Republic shut down the plant in December and put 230 production workers out of work. The workers sat in to win their severance and vacation pay and health benefits. They were able to prevent Republic from absconding with most of the production assets. Since then Serious Materials has bought the plant and will reopen it eventually rehiring all the workers.

The Labor Board will now approach Republic's owner to seek a settlement of the charges. If there is no settlement, it will then go before an administrative law judge to order resolution.

“All this is too late to change the abuses of our rights by Republic management. We were deliberately denied our rights and protections under the union contract and law, only the occupation of our factory in December 2008 won justice for the workers”, said Armando Robles President of UE Local 1110

UE went on to say that, "Companies routinely violate workers rights with no penalty. There are more fines involved in a parking ticket than breaking federal labor law. Without the passage of The Employee Free Choice Act more workers will have to resort to non-violent tactics like the plant occupation to get their most basic rights respected and to be able to support their families."

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