By NR Staff • 

Steelworkers walk picket lines

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DM

Morale will stay up until payday. It's sad it had to come to this. Both sides lose during a strike.

garr55

I would like to take the liberty to thank the community for all your support.It really means a lot to us steel workers.

judgenot

We would like to thank all the folks for their support during this very difficult time. It is appreciated so very much.

Kona



Can someone explain what is the purpose of the "picket line"? For the general public, very few people seem to care.

"�Morale is up,� he said, adding that there is a disc jockey playing music. He said they have had pop-up tents, heaters, burn barrels and coffee and water stations set up at times.

darci

cascade steel just needs to do the right thing and be fair to the workers! the steelworkers just want a fair contract, right now they are not even keeping up with inflation and have'nt for years now all because of corporate greed! they dont deserve anymore take aways!!!!!! and how sad for the community of mcminville to suffer economically right along with them!!!!!!

garr55

VERY SAD when most of the management will not give you the time of day and when they was where we are now.I DONT FORGET AND THEN do not call me my friend cause it will not be forgotten .And they can walk just like us

just me

kona, we are picketing due to unfair labor practices.

op91

First off, thanks to all that support the steel workers. Next I would like to dispel some misunderstandings about us that I have read on this message board.
1) We are not greedy people and we do appreciate our jobs. We only want a fair deal with the company that we have stuck by and rallied with in good and bad times.
2)Striking is not a position that we took on a whim, unless you have been in the negotiations and have first hand knowledge of all that is proposed, then it is unfair to judge us.
3) I hear allot about the money we make, this is a very interesting topic. Did you know that in the last 20+ years that the steel workers here have not received an raise!.
let me explain this, we have received a cost of living adjustment. This is not a raise. this is so that you can buy under ideal conditions the same items now as you did in the previous years. a raise on the other hand brings your financial standard up from previous levels.
4) To be clear this strike is not about financial compensation, at this point the company hasn't even talked about that in any depth. It's about them bargaining in good faith with the folks they employ,

Kona

1) What exactly is a "a fair contract"?

2) Most middle class jobs have not kept with inflation.

3) "in the last 20+ years that the steel workers here have not received an raise"! That is mostly on how a raise is interpreted. It can be interpreted in many ways depending on a person's point of view.

4) What is "bargaining in good faith with the folks they employ"? If you disagree with the person you are bargaining with, does that mean that s/he is not "bargaining in good faith"?

I wish all of you an outcome that works well for everyone involved.

op91

Kona-
I find your interpretation of comment #3 surprising, as I thought my explanation was very clear. a cola is a cost of living adjustment, and our cola over the past years has not kept up with inflation either. A raise allows you to have more purchasing options than before. and raises your standard of living.

#4 the old saying goes, it takes two to tango. if the company wants to truly negotiate then by all means that's what we want as well. but if they just want to play games and make no true strides in the resolution of this dispute then what would you have us do.

#1 a fair contract is one that insures our ability to work and raise our families, but also provides us with a standard of living and working compensatory to the work we preform. Please let me preface this. Our jobs have substantial risks inherent to the nature of the tasks we preform.



If you have never stood on very hot steel for long periods of time then you cannot understand the job we do and it would be useless for me to continue debating our current labor situation with you.

DM

Virtually all jobs give you a COLA instead of a "raise" unless your position changes and you're given more responsibility. Do you expect the company to give top tier employees more than a cost of living increase every year? That's what being part of a union is all about. You have a starting wage, a break in of several years before you get to the top rate, then you get COLA to attempt to keep pace with inflation. Some years it does, some it doesn't.

Kona

This is the reality, most everyone in the middle class is not keeping up with the cost of living. This is the headwind that just about everyone is facing when negotiating for wages to keep up with cost of living, or more than cost of living.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- It's official. The first decade of the 21st century will go down in the history books as a step back for the American middle class.
Last week, the government made gloomy headlines when it released the latest census report showing the poverty rate rose to a 17-year high. A whopping 46.2 million people (or 15.1% of the U.S. population) live in poverty and 49.9 million live without health insurance.

But the data also gave the first glimpse of what happened to middle-class incomes in the first decade of the millennium. While the earnings of middle-income Americans have barely budged since the mid 1970s, the new data showed that from 2000 to 2010, they actually regressed.
For American households in the middle of the pay scale, income fell to $49,445 last year, when adjusted for inflation, a level not seen since 1996.

And over the 10-year period, their income is down 7%.
"Economists talk about the lost decade in Japan. Well, with these 2010 data, we can confirm the lost decade for the American middle class," said Jared Bernstein, senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Kona

op91,

You said, "If you have never stood on very hot steel for long periods of time then you cannot understand the job we do and it would be useless for me to continue debating our current labor situation with you".

That is similar to what teachers always say in their negotiations. That argument just doesn't work well. Many people have very difficult jobs, both mentally and physically.

Again, if the situation warrants that everyone gets additional compensation, that is great. If the value of product goes down, or is in less demand, then unfortunately, the value of a person's labor goes down as well, even though a person is working just as hard, or harder.

ItIsWhatItIs

most people don't get raises, they get COLA increases---but guess what???? many companies are not only NOT giving COLA increases, they are REDUCING wages, c'mon, we all wish we were earning more money, not paying so much for medical insurance, having better coverage but the economy is bad and it's bad for everyone not just individuals but companies too - be thankful you have a job - how about this for an idea? if it's that bad GO FIND WORK SOMEWHERE ELSE, no one is forcing you to stay.

Blah Blah Blah

I agree with ItIsWhatItIs - i mean if your job is that dangerous, that unpleasant, that physically demanding, you don't have to stay there, bottom line is ALL jobs have things that suck - things we think no one else would put up with, but people do, and we are all seeing harder times, why do the steel workers feel they are "special" and shouldn't see what the rest of us are dealing with all the time - I got a $1.50/hr cut in pay - my company isn't doing that great, I pay $25 more for my health insurance, i have more work since positions have been eliminated completely - well, since i can't find something better, I'll stay until I do or until the company I work for recovers and we're compensated better --- yeah, it would be great to earn more money, have better benefits and do less work....when i find a job like that, i tell you, i'll never retire!

NWGuy1970

Kona is definetly a troll.

If I had to guess, I'd say management or the family of management.

MER

Support and good wishes for all of you on strike. You should be proud of yourselves for stading up for what you believe in.

Hammer

hey Blah Blah, Whatitis and all you other haters out there, if you all are to scared to fight for what you believe in and stand up for yourselves then just keep your opinions to yourselves. My union brothers and sisters have decieded that we are going to stand up and fight for what we feel we deserve. If you dont back us that is your choice, so why are you spending all this time writing comments and keeping up on our buisness. Sounds to me like you are all jealous, what happened did some of you haters not make it at the mill?
I am proud of my co-workers that stand on the picket line with me no matter what happens in the long run. Thank you to all the people who honk and wave as they drive by, it keeps our moral up.

Michael Tubbs Sr

....haters?

I haven't seen hate posted in any of the above comments.

Hammer

hmmmm? I have read every comment posted on the numerous storys about the labor dispute at Cascade Steel. Many have called the hard working people of the mill "foolish" and "crazy" for not going to work and that "hundreds of people would gladly take our jobs".

We are not only fighting for ourselves but for future union employees of Cascade. Also to not fight now would be disrespectful to our union brothers and sisters who have fought for the past 40 years for the benifits that we currently have.

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