Union Steelworkers Told Goodyear Could Hire Replacement Workers - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

10/28/06-Tyler

Union Steelworkers Told Goodyear Could Hire Replacement Workers

The Union Steelworkers have been on strike three weeks now, all because Goodyear cannot promise to keep the Tyler plant open. Yesterday, the union workers were notified Goodyear could start using strike replacement workers at some of the plants. The union does not know, however, if Tyler's plant is one of them.  

It's becoming a common sight, picketers outside the Goodyear plant 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  "It's something we got to do you know," said Willie Campbell, a Union Worker for 14 years. "We're doing it for a purpose and our purpose is to keep this plant open."

The news of replacement workers has spread through the union, but has not stopped them from moving on.   Saturday, the union held its annual chili-cook off and turkey shoot to raise money for their scholarship fund.

"Sure it's hard information, but we still remain hopeful," said Jim Clark, a Union Worker for 38 years. "We have responsibilities, and we know things have to continue on and the scholarship is one of the better things we do at the plant."

Union President Jim Wansley says Goodyear's decision to hire replacement workers is a bad move.  "They had two choices," said Wansley. "One is go back and get a bargain and get a contract that they can make money, but not do all the things that they wanted to do, and the other is to make a bad move like this. The fact of the matter is, they weren't able to get many tires and they won't be able to get very many tires with people that don't know anything about tire plants."

Others feel getting replacement work is unfair.  "If they are going to do that, bring in temporary help, why don't they go make a decision about this plant, put us back to work and they won't need the temporary help," said Campbell. 

Like most of this strike, union workers are forced to wait and see what happens, but in the meantime they say they will stick together.

The union has not been notified when Goodyear will start hiring replacement workers. Goodyear could not be reached for comment.

Molly Reuter, Reporting. mreuter@kltv.com

 

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