The Haymarket Riot and the Origins of May Day

May 1st is May Day, the international workers’ holiday honoring the labor movement. May Day is celebrated in at least 80 countries worldwide, from Argentina to Vietnam, but not in the United States. Here, our “Labor Day” was carefully put into September – by President Grover Cleveland in 1894 – specifically so that we would not observe May Day, with all of its radical roots in syndicalist labor history. This is deeply ironic, for the event that gave rise to May Day observances the world over occurred right here in the United States: the bombing at Haymarket Square, Chicago, on May 4, 1886, during a labor rally...

For the full article, go here.

District 13 Local Urgent Need for HELP!

District 13 Local Urgent Need for HELP!Many locals have made donations to Local 13-1 and we are eternally grateful for...

Posted by USW Oil Workers on Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Support the USW Oil Workers ULP Strike and Defense Fund

USW oil workers have been forced into an unfair labor practice strike. The workers are fighting to secure fair contracts that will protect the health and safety of workers and communities. The oil industry is the richest in the world, but their greed and their bad faith bargaining has stalled efforts to improve conditions in their workplaces. The industry has refused to address serious health and safety issues. Your donation will help support these brave workers and their families as they stand up to one of the most powerful industries in the world for safe workplaces and communities.

To donate, go here.

Deal To End Strike At BP Refinery In Whiting

CHICAGO (CBS) — Workers and management at BP have reached a tentative agreement that would end a months-long strike at the refinery in Whiting, Ind.

The United Steel Workers employees must still ratify the contract, and officials expect a vote to occur in the next few days...

For the full article, go here.

#StopFastTrack

I'm Chris Harris and I've worked at the Granite City steel mill for 26 years. My family depends on my job. But at the...

Posted by United Steelworkers (USW) on Thursday, 30 April 2015

Workers Memorial Day

Four decades ago, Congress passed the Occupational Safety and Health Act, promising every worker the right to a safe...

Posted by United Steelworkers (USW) on Tuesday, 28 April 2015

The Words of Dead Workers

To give voice to 35 workers killed on the job over the past 35 years at a massive refinery in Texas City, hundreds of surviving family members, co-workers and friends gathered there last month to erect white crosses marked with their names.

They conducted the ceremony on the 10th anniversary of an explosion that killed 15 workers and injured more than 170, including townspeople...

For the full article, go here.

USW Files Additional Charges Against LyondellBasell Houston

Nashville, Tenn.—The United Steelworkers Union (USW) says LyondellBasell Houston Refining falsely declared impasse in talks with the union for a new contract and illegally implemented its rejected “last, best and final” offer.

“LyondellBasell’s premature declaration of impasse and refusal to bargain with USW Local 13-227 is outrageous,” said USW District 13 Staff Representative Jim Lefton, who is bargaining the contract with the local’s negotiating committee...

For the full article, go here.

Stop Fast Track

Hit that thumbs up if you agree with Senator Harry Reid, “HELL NO” to #FastTrack! Don’t forget to call your lawmakers...

Posted by United Steelworkers (USW) on Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Rally at Marathon Petroleum Shareholder Meeting

Members at Marathon are still fighting a tough fight on important contract issues and protesting the company's serious unfair labor practices. Please join us as we rally at the Marathon shareholder meeting to tell the company that we won’t stop until every worker has a fair contract...

For the full article, go here.

#Solidarity

Though many have gone back to work, nearly 3,000 oil workers are still on an unfair labor practice strike – fighting...

Posted by United Steelworkers (USW) on Tuesday, 21 April 2015

The USW Strike Still Isn't Over at LyondellBasell and Marathon

The national United Steelworkers strike technically ended more than two weeks ago when Royal Dutch Shell and the international arm of the United Steelworkers finally hammered out a pattern contract agreement that would last for four years. But even though most of the union members will be back on the job by April 1, workers at Marathon's Texas City Refinery and the LyondellBasell refinery in Pasadena are still without local contracts, and thus are still on strike...

For the full article, go here.

Members of Local 750 support strikers at Marathon's Galveston Bay Refinery

USW Local 750 is back at work at Shell Chemical and Motiva in Norco and Convent, LA but they're still in the fight....

Posted by USW Oil Workers on Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Fallen worker memorial USW Local 13-1 Texas City

USW Local 227 shines a spotlight on LyondellBasell's corporate greed in Houston

Members of Local 227 shine a spotlight on LyondellBasell's corporate greed in Houston, Texas.

Posted by USW Oil Workers on Saturday, 28 March 2015

Welcome to the USW!

The #USW is proud to welcome 102 new members in District 6 who work at S&T Industrial in Sault Ste. Marie Ontario! #USWWorks

Posted by United Steelworkers (USW) on Saturday, 28 March 2015

Demanding a safe and fair contract for USW Local 7-1!

Hundreds of USW Oil Workers and supporters take to the streets to demand a safe and fair contract for members of USW Local 7-1!

Posted by USW Oil Workers on Saturday, 28 March 2015

USW Reaches Tentative Agreement with Honeywell

Three-Year Proposed Contract May End Lockout in Metropolis

PITTSBURGH – The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that the union has reached a tentative agreement on a new, three-year contract with Honeywell Corp., covering about 150 members of Local 7-669 who were locked out of their jobs at the company’s Metropolis, Ill. chemical processing facility on Aug. 2, 2014.

“Once again, our brothers and sisters in Metropolis have proven that we are all stronger when we stand together,” said USW International President Leo W. Gerard. “Their solidarity has been an inspiration and an example to Steelworkers across the country whose employers engage in similar union-busting tactics"...

For the full article, go here.

Letter to Marathon Management Regarding Texas City Memorial

Dear Dave,

On March 23rd, the members of USW Local 13-1 held a candlelight vigil at the Galveston Bay Refinery to commemorate the 10-year anniversary of the 2005 explosion and fire that killed 15 workers and injured 170 more. More than 400 workers from the refinery were joined by our families and our neighbors from Texas City and around the region for an evening of solemn prayer and remembrance.

We couldn't help but notice that no one from Marathon’s management team took the time to attend this vigil...

For the full article, go here.

Mourn for the dead...fight like hell for the living

On March 23, 2005 a hydrocarbon vapor cloud exploded at the ISOM isomerization process unit at BP’s Galveston Bay...

Posted by USW Oil Workers on Monday, 23 March 2015

USW Local 7-1 holds a candlelight vigil

USW Local 7-1-on strike at BP in Whiting, IN-holds a candlelight vigil to remember the workers who lost their lives on in the BP Texas City explosion.

Posted by USW Oil Workers on Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Remembering lives lost in tragedy

TEXAS CITY — With refinery units hissing in the background and a bagpiper playing “Amazing Grace,” more than 150 people marched in front of Marathon Petroleum’s Galveston Bay Refinery Monday night.

The marchers, members of United Steelworkers Union Local 13-1 and their supporters, were there to memorialize those who have died at the Texas City refinery...

For the full article, go here.

Texas City Lessons Discarded

Ten years after a Texas City refinery blast killed 15 and rattled a community, workers keep dying.

The billowing canopies went up on a bare patch of the Texas City refinery grounds during a repair cycle last fall. Some workers saw the tents as just a place to eat lunch. Brian Ambrose saw a nightmare repeating itself...

For the full article, go here.

About the NOBP process

Family day at Local 5 in Martinez

U.S. Refinery Strikes Now Turn to Local Negotiations

(Bloomberg) -- United Steelworkers members on strike at some oil refineries across the U.S. will remain off the job until they receive offers that match up with a national deal reached Thursday, a union representative said.

USW members at Tesoro Corp.’s Carson oil refinery in California have been on strike since Feb. 1 and their return to work hinges on a local offer that the company has yet to make, Dave Campbell, secretary-treasurer of the USW local representing the plant, said. It’s unclear whether Tesoro will honor the “national pattern” agreement that union leaders tentatively accepted Thursday, he said....

For the full article, go here.

Solidarity Works!

USW Reaches Tentative Agreement with Oil Industry; Agreement with Shell Sets Pattern for Industry

(Pittsburgh) – The United Steelworkers (USW) announced today that it has reached a tentative agreement on a new four-year contract with Shell Oil as a pattern agreement for the rest of the industry. The agreement accomplishes the major goals as directed by the USW’s oil conference in October of last year, and has been approved by union’s lead negotiators and National Oil Bargaining Policy (NOBP) Committee.

“We salute the solidarity exhibited by our membership,” said USW International President Leo W. Gerard. “There was no way we would have won vast improvements in safety and staffing without it.”

Safety issues were central to the negotiations, and the proposed agreement calls for the immediate review of staffing and workload assessments, with USW safety personnel involved at every facility. Daily maintenance and repair work in the plants was another critical issue that, too, was addressed...

For the full article, go here.

3/11/15: NOBP update‬

NOBP update: (Tuesday March 10)

Not a lot has changed from the last update. They have changed the format of the calls where in the early calls each group on strike was giving an update to now with so many groups out it would take too long to go through each group.

The only groups reporting are the striking groups that have something important to add to the discussions.

The Tesoro group in Anacortes, Washington reported that the Company had filed for an injunction on the picket lines due to actions of the members on the lines. The charges were fought by the International and the judge ruled in favor of the striking local that there were no violations.

The International Attorney reported that this is a plan that the companies usually depend on, trying to get injunctions and prevent a picket line at as many gates as they can. It is very important that we conduct ourselves on the picket lines as instructed by the International to prevent these charges. It is critical that we maintain all picket lines at all gates according to the International Union Attorney.

There were some unofficial numbers quoted for employees crossing the lines for all sites on strike. These numbers are for all striking locals. If I remember correctly, it was reported that around 200 employees out of around 7,000 total are crossing the lines.

All groups that gave reports are still reporting that the support from the community and other locals in their area is still overwhelming. This is great as we are 5 weeks into this NOBP ULP Strike.

The Policy committee and strategic campaigns committee have both been commenting on the solidarity of all groups on strike and all locals that are offering support for the groups on the picket lines.

I was a little late on the call due to attending the local meeting and having to head to work, so I didn’t catch everything said by the two policy committeeman who were on the call. They did sound optimistic that the Company was a little more attentive to the request of the International Negotiators at the table yesterday. The word we got was that they had met during the day yesterday and had continued to meet into the evening.

The last text I received indicated that they are still at the table today and that the Policy Committee was heading to Houston to be available to review any proposal that may get handed over by the Company.

Some of the striking groups have started back with the local negotiations that had been halted by the companies when the International pulled the groups out.

The next conference call is on Thursday.

IN SOLIDARITY,

--Neal

Solidarity in Brazil

Support from the AFL-CIO

Safety Issues in the Oil Strike

3/13/15: Safe Refineries Save Lives--Rally at One Shell Square

March 13, 2015• 12:00 PM
One Shell Square
Corner of Poydras St and St Charles Ave in New Orleans (701 Poydras St.)
New Orleans, LA 70139

Almost 7,000 USW members working in oil refineries and chemical plants—including at the Shell and Motiva facilities in Norco and Convent, Louisiana are striking to demand that the oil industry to bargain fairly with workers and implement lifesaving improvements in refinery safety, fatigue management, and staffing.

On Friday, March 13 oil workers from across Louisiana will take the fight from the picket lines to the oil industry’s front door with a demonstration at One Shell Square in New Orleans.

Join Us!

Buses leaving from:
USW Local 620
10:30am
2416 South Darla Ave
Gonzales, LA

USW Local 750
11:00am
601 Goodhope St
Norco, LA

If you plan on riding a bus you MUST RSVP online at https://actionnetwork.org/events/safe-refineries-save-lives-rally-at-one-shell-square or at the union hall.

Police block striking refinery workers from entering Shell Houston HQ

(Reuters) - Police blocked several hundred striking laborers from entering Shell Oil Co's downtown Houston headquarters during a protest on Friday to demand a new labor contract for U.S. refinery workers.

Officers quickly moved to guard entrances to the 50-story building as the workers climbed stairs leading to public doorways. There were no arrests or scuffles...

For the full article, go here.

Great action in Houston and Texas City today!

USW Local 8-719 holding strong

300+ rally in Houston!

Hitting the streets in Texas City

Steelworker air force

We're workers, not terrorists

USW Local 5 in Martinez, CA watches videos about refinery safety... on Tesoro's tanks!

Poll: Do you support the striking steelworkers?

Please follow the link and show support for the strike. This is a poll being done in Houston.

To vote, go here.

#‎StopFastTrack‬ on Capitol Hill

USW Statement on March 4 Talks with Oil Industry

Today the USW held a tele-conference meeting with Shell in an attempt to keep open a dialogue and to continue to reach an agreement to end the strike...

For the full article, go here.

REMINDER: 3/6/15: Safe Refineries Save Lives Day of Action

Almost 7,000 USW members working in oil refineries and chemical plants are striking to demand that the oil industry to bargain fairly with workers and implement lifesaving improvements in refinery safety, fatigue management, and staffing.

On Friday, March 6 oil workers from across the Gulf Coast will take the fight from the picket lines to the oil industry’s front door with demonstrations at the headquarters of Shell, Motiva and Lyondell Basell. Join Us!

To see event details, go here.

USW@Work

No price too high for safety

USW strike is about worker safety

More than 5,000 United Steelworkers union members are striking at refineries across the nation. Several hundred of them are on strike here in Texas City.

One of the biggest deal-breakers in the negotiations was the refusal of the refineries to include contract language protecting the right to a safe work environment. The Steelworkers want the contractual right to stop working in an unsafe workplace. The union wants to limit overtime hours to combat the safety challenges caused by worker fatigue...

For the full article, go here.

This is What We're Fighting For

At the bargaining tables and on the picket lines we’re fighting for life-saving improvements to address fatigue, the industry’s use of outside contractors for day to day work, and other commonsense measures to make oil refineries and chemical plants safer. We’re fighting to make sure that when we go to work each day, our families know that we’re going to come home at the end of the shift the same way we left.

Over the past several years too many of our children have lost their parents; too many spouses have lost their husbands and wives; and too many families have been torn apart by fires, explosions and releases in the oil refining industry...

For the full article, go here.

Interfaith service at Local 13-423

Striking families in Port Arthur, Texas hold an interfaith service at the Local 13-423 union hall as the strike at Motiva enters its second week.

We are Steelworkers

We are Steelworkers. We take pride in our jobs and in our neighborhoods. We're coaches and clergymen, community service volunteers, organizers of school supply drives and so much more. We work hard and care much. Whether on the job or in the community, we always give our best! http://www.usw.org/uswcares. ‪#‎USWCares‬ ‪#‎USWWorks‬

Text Alerts

Get connected and stay informed! Sign up to get text message updates from the USW about National Oil Bargaining bargaining!

Sign up from your phone by texting the word OIL to 47486‬

USW Oil Workers

USW Local 7-1 President, Dave Danko, "Can all of the members in the room who have witnessed a fire, release, or explosion in the past year please stand up."

[Every union member in the audience stands up]

NOBP update‬

NOBP update:

‪A very big item this week was the joint letter sent out by the International and the Building Trades with the agreement from the Building Trades in support of the USW ULP Strike.

Larry Burchfield gave an update of the Policy Committee items.

-The policy committee took some time to travel to each of the striking sites across the USA and walk with the members on the picket lines along with answering any questions the membership had about the negotiations.
-He wanted to make sure everyone understood that no matter what the letter that was leaked out said Shell has never came back to the table with any language patterned to address the contracting out issue, the Union has offered to pattern the language if the company can’t.
-It appears that all companies are in support of Shells inability to meet the needs of the negotiations.
-The Policy Committee ask that everyone be very careful when reading these flash media reports as they are most likely not accurate. The USW continues to send out the truth about what is taking place with the negotiations.
-As of the last conference call, there are just over 6,500 members out on Strike and walking the picket lines.
-Please continue with the support to these striking locals.

Striking local updates:

-The lines are strong and the picket lines are being manned 24/7 at all striking facilities.
-Some locals with docks have boats with signs patrolling the waterways near the dock facilities.
-A large number of striking locals are reporting that the local trades groups are offering support as in walking the picket line, cooking, delivering support to the picket lines when needed, etc.
-Some locals are reporting that some of the facilities may not have enough supervisors to run the plant.
-One of the facilities Supervision is calling employees back for investigations into the way the plant was handed over. The report indicated that there was no one to take control of the plant until 6 or more hours after the CBA ended. Hopefully we will get an update on this at the next call for further explanation. ULP charges have been filed on each of these cases.
-Some of the striking facilities are back at the table to start their local negotiations again. Some are being put off by the company but continue to ask for meaningful negotiations on the issues.
-A few members have been arrested on the picket lines along with some contractors coming very close to hitting picketers and being stopped by the police. These issues have been rare but are taking place.
-The companies have been sending out letters to the salaried employees telling them that this strike is about pay and that this is why the USW has called the strike.
-Shell Motiva reported they have signed up over 600 members for the USW offered insurance.
-Shell Motiva also reports that the IBEW walked out with them when the CBA ended.
-All locals on strike are reporting that the support coming form the community and the other locals is still very strong.
-At some locations the company is sending out letters to the striking members explaining that this strike is not about safety and that the members do not support the USW in this strike.
-A large number of ULP charges across all sites have been filed and the International is working them.
-There was a report that the company was opening up what they called clean gates and that these gates cannot be struck. There was a lot of discussion on this topic and the international explained it like this. The company can setup gates called “Neutral Gates” that are to be used by contractors not doing bargaining unit work. These gates can not be struck to some extent. The Union will post an observer at each of these gates to watch everyone entering and exiting these gates. If it is believed that anyone doing bargaining unit work is using these gates then they will be picketed.

The next conference call will be next Wednesday.

IN SOLIDARITY,

--Neal

Striking families come together at USW Local 13-1

This is what we're fighting for! Striking families come together at USW Local 13-1. Food, movies, games, music, and lots of fun and lots of solidarity.

Hundreds of striking oil worker families hit the picket lines in at Shell/Motiva in Norco, LA

Hundreds of striking oil worker families hit the picket lines in at Shell/Motiva in Norco, LA

Union official: 'Solidarity' is key for striking BP Refinery workers

Three weeks after they walked off the job at BP Whiting Refinery with no end to the strike in sight, members of United Steelworkers Local 7-1 were urged Saturday to stay the course and not cross the picket lines.

"Solidarity is the key. It's they only way to protect our contract," Steve Garey, a member of the National Oil Bargaining Policy Committee, told several hundred striking members and their spouses at a Saturday rally at Lloyd McBride Local 1014 union hall in Gary...

For the full article, go here.

Video on NOBP process

A video every member should watch explaining parts of the NOBP process and how it works along with some discussion about the proposals that have been rejected.

Unity across industries and international solidarity from across the globe!

Unity across industries and international solidarity from across the globe! USW Local 235A locked-out members from Sherwin Alumina in Corpus Christi and a global delegation of union leaders from Unite in the United Kingdom, NUM in South Africa and the CFMEU in Australia joined the picket lines Thur., Feb. 26 at the LyondellBasell refinery in Houston (Local 227) and the Marathon Galveston Bay refinery in Texas City (Local 13-1). After joining the picket line, the group participated in the Family Day event organized by Local 13-1 in Pasadena, Texas. Fantastic Solidarity! Thank you all!

An Oil Worker & a Union Staffer Explain Why 1,000s of Oil Workers Across the Country Are On Strike

Oil workers in multiple states around the country, as In These Times has reported over the last two weeks, are on strike for the first time in a decade. One of the central locations for this strike has been California, where workers at multiple locations have been on the picket line.

Jim Payne is financial secretary of United Steelworkers Local 5, the union for oil workers in northern California, including the struck Tesoro Golden Eagle Refinery. Tracy Scott is a rank-and-file worker at the refinery, currently on leave to work for the local as a staff representative...

For the full article, go here.

3/6/15: Safe Refineries Save Lives Day of Action

Almost 7,000 USW members working in oil refineries and chemical plants are striking to demand that the oil industry to bargain fairly with workers and implement lifesaving improvements in refinery safety, fatigue management, and staffing.

On Friday, March 6 oil workers from across the Gulf Coast will take the fight from the picket lines to the oil industry’s front door with demonstrations at the headquarters of Shell, Motiva and Lyondell Basell. Join Us!

To see event details, go here.

Letter to USW Oil Workers

Letter to USW Oil Workers

This letter is being mailed to all USW Oil Workers and should arrive shortly. Click here to download a PDF of this letter on letterhead that you can print out and distribute at your local union hall, picket line, or facility.

Dear Brothers and Sisters:

As you know, we began our unfair labor practice strike on Feb. 1 at nine locations. Since then, we have expanded it to 15 locations and nearly 7,000 members. In the past few days, some companies have taken to writing letters to our members. These letters spin their positions about the negotiations and the offers they have made.

Safety is Paramount
During this round of negotiations, the union has made many proposals to address the safety and well-being of our members. While the companies have regurgitated some of the language of these proposals in their letters to employees, thereby giving the impression that they are actually bargaining over these issues, they have, in fact, only agreed to “meet and discuss” them. They have, up until now, adamantly refused to bargain in good faith over these critical matters.

The union has made specific proposals about how safety issues need to be assessed jointly with the local union and our safety committees and professionals. We’ve made proposals on how vacancies need to be reviewed and filled; on the way overtime and exceptions to the fatigue standards need continuous monitoring; and how we can insure safe staffing levels in the operations without undermining the bargaining unit. The company’s response has been to shut down any such discussion and to refuse any good faith bargaining over such issues...

For the entire letter, go here.

Joint Statement from USW President Leo W. Gerard and NABTU President Sean McGarvey

ATLANTA, GA -- There has been much confusion concerning the United Steelworkers (USW) negotiations with the refinery industry regarding the scope of our members’ work.

We are issuing this statement to make clear that the scope of work USW is seeking in negotiations with the refinery owners does not and will not include the following: new construction; turnaround or shut down work (not currently performed by in-house USW members); and specialty work that requires specialty equipment.

In addition, the USW does not and will not seek to bar the subcontracting of such work to contractors whose employees are represented by North America’s Building Trades Unions. The daily maintenance and repair work covered by the existing scope or recognition clauses contained in USW agreements with refinery owners and performed by the refinery owners’ workforce is the work of the USW. This is the only work the USW is trying to defend in the current negotiations with the refinery owners...

For the full article, go here.

Flare-up roars at BP Whiting Refinery

WHITING | A massive flare-up lit up the sky at the BP Whiting Refinery early Monday morning.

Around 6:30 a.m., flames leaped and thick plumes of smoke rose over a production unit at the 126-year-old refinery, where nearly 1,100 union workers have been on strike for more than two weeks...

For the full article, go here.

USW Local 675 and the Occupy Wall Street Illuminator Collective send a message at Tesoro in Carson, CA

USW Local 675 and the Occupy Wall Street Illuminator Collective send a message at Tesoro in Carson, CA.

Solidarity event at the Capitol, 2/24/15

National Nurses United hits the picket lines with USW Local 5

‪National Nurses United hits the picket lines with USW Local 5--on strike at Tesoro in Martinez, California. Thanks for the support!

USW Local 13-423 holding the line strong

‪USW Local 13-423 holding the line strong in the first days of their strike at Motiva in Port Arthur, TX! One Day Longer!

Like a Bad Neighbor, Chevron is There

The federal agency that investigates refinery catastrophes released its final report late last month on the massive fire, volatile vapor release and toxic smoke plume at Chevron’s Richmond, Calif., refinery in 2012 that imperiled 19 workers and sickened 15,000 residents of surrounding communities.

The report says Chevron knew the pipe that ruptured was made of material likely to corrode, that pipes of the same material at Chevron plants had previously failed and caused fires, that Chevron repeatedly rebuffed experts’ recommendations to replace the pipe, and that when the pipe did begin to breach, Chevron disastrously attempted to patch it instead of shutting down the high-pressure, high-temperature hydrocarbon process unit to which it was attached...

For the full article, go here.

INDUSTRY DEMANDS MORE BLOOD, WILL NOT ENGAGE IN MEANINGFUL TALKS TO ADDRESS CRITICAL SAFETY ISSUES

Click here do download a PDF version of this update to hand out at your local union hall, picket lines, or plant gates.

In negotiations with the oil industry, management continues to refuse to consider any process or proposal that would promote a safer workplace with better trained workers and less fatigue:

-The industry refuses to address well-documented and widespread safety deficiencies,
-They reject our efforts to reduce excessive overtime,
-The company wants to continue rely on contractors for daily maintenance, and
-They refuse to fill permanent vacancies in the units.

For the full article, go here.

#‎uswworks‬ ‪#‎saferefineries‬

‪No snow, ice, rain or other brutal weather will keep us from standing up for what's right. That's why our sisters and brothers in the oil industry are bravely fighting for safe jobs and safe communities in an unfair labor practice strike that just got bigger: http://bit.ly/1B1dZJx. LIKE and SHARE to show some love and solidarity. ‪#‎uswworks‬ ‪#‎saferefineries‬

Hundreds rally on the picketline

‪Hundreds rally on the picketline as USW Local 423 in Port Arthur Texas joins the unfair labor practice strike

feb. 19th conference call update‬

‪Update from Conference call on Thursday:

The International and the Company are at the table talking again but word is the talks are not very productive. The Company passed another proposal across the table but there was very little change from the last so it was rejected. All sites were informed to reject this proposal at their local tables.

All striking locals report the lines are strong, and the support from the community, other locals and the International are still great.

As reported in our last update, the Company was contacting members to try and get them to cross the picket line. The striking locals report they are able to fight this and keep the membership strong.

There are reports from the Texas locals on strike that the Trades Locals in the area are helping to find the striking members work.

Local 13-1 will be hosting a family day at their hall on Thursday February 26 for all union members who want to bring their family out and enjoy the movie Frozen. The movie will start at 5 PM.

Some striking locals report that some local restaurants in their area are providing food for the members.

When the strike was called, the Company at some local tables stopped negotiating on local issues and just walked away from the table. The word from a couple of striking locals is the Company has asked to start the local negotiations again.

The Policy Committee was able to breakaway from the International Negotiations and visit the striking locations. The report form the Policy Committee is that the solidarity and resolve of the membership is unbelievable and their commitment to stay the fight to the end is tremendous.

The next conference call will be on Sunday.

In Solidarity,

--Neal

13-423 joins the ULP strike at Motiva in Port Arthur

‪USW Local 13-423 joins the ULP strike at Motiva in Port Arthur.

USW to Expand ULP Oil Strike

Work Stoppage begins tonight at Motiva’s Port Arthur, Texas facility; 24-hour strike notices delivered to three Louisiana facilities

(Pittsburgh) – The United Steelworkers (USW) announced today that it will expand its unfair labor practice strike (ULP) by launching a work stoppage tonight at midnight at the Motiva Enterprises refinery in Port Arthur, Texas.

This refinery, a 50-50 joint venture between Shell Oil Company (American subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell) and Saudi Refining, Inc. (subsidiary of Saudi Aramco), produces more than 600,000 barrels per day (BPD)...

For the full article, go here.

#‎SafeRefineries‬ ‪#‎USWWorks‬

WATCH and SHARE our video to stand in solidarity. This fight is about making sure our brothers and sisters come home safe and that our communities are safe. Join with us to demand big oil bargain in good faith and put people over profits.

#‎Solidarity

‪“I have taught my kids to fight for what they believe in, and I want to show my grandkids that also. They have to learn that you have to stick together for a common cause, or you will be alone. I was taught that you take care of those that take care of you. That is a lesson that we have to pass on.” — Michael Billings, USW member from Local 8-719 with his grandson Easton Kelly, 3, in Catlettsburg, Kentucky. Brother Michael is one of thousands of USW oil workers on an unfair labor practice strike against the oil industry, fighting for safe communities and workplaces. He and his little grandson prove that solidarity, strength and courage are not only ‪#‎USWMade‬, but part of our families’ values. LIKE and SHARE to show ‪#‎Solidarity‬.‬

As the Rich Get Richer, Unions Are Poised for Comeback

(Bloomberg) -- After years of avoiding confrontation, the U.S. labor movement is reasserting itself. From the ports of Los Angeles to the car plants of Detroit, unions are demanding payback for sacrifices they say helped revive the economy.

Oil workers have walked off the job for higher wages and better working conditions. Dock workers have snarled West Coast ports. Personnel staffing oil terminals at the Port of Long Beach, California, are threatening to strike. In Detroit, union leaders girding for contract talks this year will push for the first raise veteran autoworkers have received in a decade...

For the full article, go here.

2/24/15: Rally at Marathon HQ

‪TUESDAY, FEB. 24 at 12:00 PM (NOON)

300 S. MAIN STREET in FINDLAY, OH 45840

USW members from 11 refineries and oil sites around the country have been forced to begin ULP strikes as the industry has refused to bargain in good faith on safety and staffing issues. More than 1,500 of these workers are employed by Marathon. Please join us and show support.

The rally will begin at Dorney Plaza (300 S. Main Street) at noon. Supporters will then march on Marathon HQ (539 S. Main Street), a short walk up the street, to demand safe workplaces and fair contracts. USW Local 207L will host lunch after the event (1130 Summit Street).

For more information, please contact Pat Gallagher, District 1 Sub-Director, at 419-874-3229, or Shawn Gilchrist, USW Strategic Campaigns, at 412-865-7350.‬

Click here to download a copy of the flyer to distribute at your plant or on your picket line.

As Bargaining Resumes, Industry Continues to Resist Proposals for Lifesaving Safety Improvements

Back at the Bargaining Table

Bargaining between the United Steelworkers and the oil industry resumed on Wednesday, February 18th. At the bargaining table the industry provided the USW bargaining committee with the information that the union had requested weeks ago. Union leaders examined the information that was provided and discussed important issues with the industry well into the night on Wednesday and through the day on Thursday...

For the full article, go here.

Safety Before Profits

‪#‎SafetyBeforeProfits‬ Click here to learn more about how USW Oil Workers are standing up for safe refineries in the ULP strike! http://www.usw.org/workpl…/…/NOB-Safety-Handbill-FINAL-1.pdf.

2/26/15: Family Night for Striking Families

USW Local 13-1 North in Pasadena, TX will be hosting a family night for striking families and community supporters on February 26, 2015 at 4:00 p.m., at their hall located at 311 Pasadena Blvd., Pasadena, TX 77506. There will be a gumbo dinner prepared by USW Local 228 and a double movie feature.

To see event details, go here.

#‎saferefiners‬ ‪#‎USWWorks‬

‪Leslie Dillon, married to an @Steelworkers oil worker, lives in fear every single day. A first responder, she knows all too well the horrific possibilities of working in a refinery, one of the most dangerous places in the world to work. At a recent rally in Texas supporting the thousands of USW oil workers forced out on an unfair labor practice strike, Dillon clutched a homemade sign decorated with hearts that said she was there for her husband. “I would rather see him out on a picket line than dead,” she said. SHARE and LIKE if you stand with the Dillon family and thousands of other Steelworkers fighting to come home safely from work every day. ‪#‎saferefiners‬ ‪#‎USWWorks‬

#USWTBT Right to Work in Lansing, Michigan Dec. 2012

‪#‎TBT‬ In 2001 Oklahoma adopted Right to Work legislation with promises of job creation and better wages, but the opposite happened. By 2011 both the number of companies relocating to the state and the total number of manufacturing jobs had reversed their climb and fell by about a third. Talk about broken promises. Pictured are members fighting Right to Work in Lansing, Michigan Dec. 2012. Today we are STILL in this fight. ‪#‎No2RTW‬ Read the full report on the RTW case in Oklahoma from the Economic Policy Institute here.

USW: California Refinery Explosion Provides Further Evidence of Need for Safety Improvements

(PITTSBURGH) -- An explosion and fire today at a refinery in Southern California underscores the United Steelworkers’ demand for improved safety conditions to protect both workers and communities.

The explosion at the ExxonMobil refinery in Torrance, Calif., occurred as 5,200 members of the United Steelworkers (USW) are conducting unfair labor practice strikes at 11 refineries across the country with safety as a major concern.

“Our members work in dangerous and too often deadly conditions,” said USW International President Leo W. Gerard. “While employers have reaped billions of dollars in profits over the past several years, they have done little to improve conditions for workers and surrounding communities.”...

For the full article, go here.

Striking Oil Workers Are Fighting for Safe Communities, Not Just Better Conditions for Themselves

The federal agency that investigates refinery catastrophes released its final report late last month on the massive fire, volatile vapor release and toxic smoke plume at Chevron’s Richmond, California, refinery in 2012 that imperiled 19 workers and sickened 15,000 residents of surrounding communities.

For the full article, go here.

It's all about safety

USW leader: U.S. refinery strike could spread over safe staffing

(Reuters) - A strike by U.S. refinery workers that entered its 16th day on Monday could spread if there is no progress in talks this week with plant owners on safe staffing levels, said the lead negotiator for the United Steelworkers union (USW)

"The longer that this strike rolls on, the more people that will be affected," said Gary Beevers, USW international vice president, in a telephone interview on Monday.

For the full article, go here.

Food bank in California

USW Local 675 setting up a food bank for strikers at Tesoro in Carson, CA

Swearing in over 80 new members

Swearing in over 80 new members at USW Local 13-423 in Port Arthur, TX. #StrongerTogether

The Oil Strike Newsletter, Issue 1 Feb. 12, 2015

This is a news letter that the International will be sending out to keep us informed on what's going on. I'll post it here and on our local web page for everyone.

--Neal

Welcome to The Oil Strike Newsletter

Issue 1 Feb. 12, 2015

Click here to download a PDF of The Oil Strike Newletter to distribute on your picketlines or at your facility.

Today, more than 5,200 USW Oil Workers at 11 refineries in California, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Texas and Washington are on strike against the industry’s unfair labor practices. Our growing list of NLRB charges filed includes: bad-faith bargaining over the companies’ refusal to negotiate over mandatory subjects, impeded bargaining for the companies’ undue delays in providing information, threatening workers if they join the ULP strike and others.

All told, our union represents about 30,000 workers throughout the oil industry at 65 refineries and hundreds of pipelines, terminals, petrochemical plants and other facilities, and these negotiations will impact every one of us, our families and communities.

This labor dispute is the result of oil industry management refusing to accept input from our union on crucial issues for decades. We repeatedly sought to address many of the issues preventing a contract settlement with our employers in past negotiations.

Over the term of our preceding contracts, employers in the oil industry made billions, often while reporting record profits. In the meantime, the same companies have done little to improve working conditions.

Our workplaces are always dangerous and often deadly, with high temperatures, high pressure, toxic chemicals and gasses, yet many of our locations are critically understaffed.

Instead of scheduling more workers fewer hours, the industry demands excessive compulsory overtime that leaves individuals fatigued and more prone to accidents.

Management further insists on expanding its unhealthy reliance on temporary contract workers rather than hiring and/or training USW-represented permanent employees to perform maintenance in our facilities on the equipment we use every day.

We are also negotiating wages, benefits and other economic issues as has been reported, but it will be impossible to reach a fair contract settlement until management changes its attitude and these companies show respect for the union workers who have made them and their shareholders very wealthy.

We will use this newsletter in addition to our current systems to keep all of our USW Oil Workers up to date on our negotiations, our campaign to win fair contracts and provide important information about solidarity actions to support our brothers and sisters on picket lines throughout the industry.

An Oil Worker & a Union Staffer Explain Why 1,000s of Oil Workers Across the Country Are On Strike

This is a great article that explains the reasons for this strike in detail. Everyone should read this and spread the word.

--Neal

Oil workers in multiple states around the country, as In These Times has reported over the last two weeks, are on strike for the first time in a decade. One of the central locations for this strike has been California, where workers at multiple locations have been on the picket line.

Jim Payne is financial secretary of United Steelworkers Local 5, the union for oil workers in northern California, including the struck Tesoro Golden Eagle Refinery. Tracy Scott is a rank-and-file worker at the refinery, currently on leave to work for the local as a staff representative...

For the full article, go here.

Donating directly to striking locals

If you would like to donate directly to the locals the information below will help guide you through the process. This information came directly from our international rep.

Support Striking Oil Workers--Donate to the Strike Fund

On February 1, 2015, our members at nine refineries were forced out on an unfair labor practice strike as industry negotiators failed to address serious concerns raised by the USW regarding the health and safety of workers and their communities

The industry gave us no other option. Our bargaining team has made every reasonable effort to reach a fair agreement, but the oil companies, represented by Shell, offered proposals showing very minimal movement.

The 3,800 USW members at the nine refineries in Texas, Washington, California and Kentucky are fighting hard and standing strong on behalf of the 65 oil refineries and almost 200 other facilities including oil terminals, pipelines and petrochemical plants.

They need our support. Your local can help by taking actions such as gate collections, donations, or sending striking locals payments from your Local Union treasury.

Please make checks payable to the local union strike and defense funds (ie. USW Local XXX Strike and Defense Fund).

On Strike Since February 1, 2015:

USW Local 675, 1200 E 220th Street, Carson, CA 90745. (Tesoro Carson Refinery)

USW Local 13-1, 2327 Texas Avenue, Texas City, TX 77590. (Marathon Galveston Bay Refinery, Houston Green Cogeneration facility, Shell Deer Park Refinery, and Shell Deer Park Chemical Plant)

USW Local 5, 1333 Pine Street, Martinez, CA 94553. (Tesoro Martinez Refinery)

USW Local 12-591, 47 Alder Lane, Mount Vernon, WA 98273. (Tesoro Anacortes Refinery)

USW Local 227, 704 E. Pasadena Freeway, Pasadena, TX 77506. (LyondellBasell in Houston)

USW Local 8-719, PO Box 214, Ashland, KY 41105. (Marathon Refinery in Catlettsburg)

On Strike Since February 8, 2015

USW Local 346, 2910 Consaul Street, Toledo, Ohio 43605. (BP Husky Refinery in Toledo, OH)

USW Local 7-1, 2045 Schrage Avenue, Whiting IN 46394. (BP Whiting Refinery)

Together, we can win a fair contract that makes oil refineries and surrounding communities safer. Together, we will last one day longer.

--Neal

Bosses' big dinner ruined by oil strike

STRIKING American oil workers confronted “aloof” industry fat cats at an exclusive London dinner on Thursday — where the man who could resolve their dispute was the star speaker.

Staff at nine refineries from California to Kentucky, operated by different firms, walked out on February 1 after industry negotiators refused to incorporate key safety clauses into their next three-year agreement with unions...

For the full article, go here.

2/14/15

The company continues to stall the talks and is slow with the needed information. The groups on strike continue to boast strong support form the community and surrounding locals.

There are concerning reports that the company has started contacting members and trying to convince them to cross the picket line. This report is coming from most all of the sites on strike. There are reports of a few members crossing the line at different locations from around the country. We need to show as much support as we can for these sites to help with the concerns.

A group of delegates traveled to the Netherlands and London to protest at the Sell headquarters and at the Petroleum Association Conference. There was support from Unite and the local unions in the area. The International reports these protests were great and the support was also excellent.

Our next conference call will be on Tuesday of next week.

If you would like to send a donation to the striking locals you can use the link below:

Support the USW Oil Workers ULP Strike and Defense Fund.

The funds from these donations are deposited into the International Strike and Defense Fund.

Last Tuesday night a motion was made to donate $10,000 dollars to local 13-1 and local 13-227 in Texas.

--Neal

Dropping a hit to the Western States Petroleum Association

Dropping a hit to the Western States Petroleum Association: Safe Refineries Save Lives! Click on link below to view video.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day to the best members in the world. Like and Share if you <3 your union!

It's all about safety

2/12/15

We were informed today the salaried employees will start training in our plant on our jobs. We talked with the management team to explain our view on our responsibility in this training. We don't expect the operators or craftsman to have to train the salaried employees that will be replacing us if we have to walkout. The company agreed and said they will be training their salaried employees. If you are unsure if someone is asking for training purposes then ask if that person is training on the unit. We have to continue our day to day jobs but will not be required to train our replacements. If there is a problem with this in the plant please let the committee know so we can address it with management.

--Neal

At my oil refinery, my life is worth the price of a pie

In an oil refinery, like the one where I work, stuff leaks all the time.

Sometimes dripped oil just makes a black spot on the ground. Sometimes 500-degree gas flows out, ignites and explodes.

These powerful blasts can maim and kill. I’ve seen it. The first time was in 1998, four years after I started work at a refinery in Anacortes, which was first owned by Shell but later became Tesoro. It happened at the adjacent refinery, owned at that time by Equilon. An explosion killed six workers. For a lot of us, that was our first experience with a refinery catastrophe with multiple fatalities. It shocked you to the core...

For the full article, go here.

Support the USW Oil Workers ULP Strike and Defense Fund

USW oil workers have been forced into an unfair labor practice strike. The workers are fighting to secure fair contracts that will protect the health and safety of workers and communities. The oil industry is the richest in the world, but their greed and their bad faith bargaining has stalled efforts to improve conditions in their workplaces. The industry has refused to address serious health and safety issues. Your donation will help support these brave workers and their families as they stand up to one of the most powerful industries in the world for safe workplaces and communities...

To donate, go here.

Statement by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on the USW Oil Workers’ Unfair Labor Practice Strike

“The AFL-CIO stands in full support of our brothers and sisters in this strike against unfair labor practices. We are in solidarity with the more than 5,200 oil refinery workers who are currently on the picket lines demanding safe working environments and an end to dangerous and abusive industry practices. No one should go to work each day wondering if it will be their last. No one should be asked by a supervisor to labor at unsafe staffing levels.

This strike is about protecting workers and their families, and it’s about protecting the communities where these facilities are located. The workers are protesting the oil companies’ serious unfair labor practices, including their refusal to negotiate over mandatory subjects, undue delays in providing information, impeded bargaining, and threats issued to workers if they joined the ULP strike. We call on the oil companies to end their bad faith bargaining and immediately work with the union to solve these problems.”

Contact: Anthony DeAngelo (202) 637-5018

For the full article, go here.

Safe Refineries Save Lives

Sign this petition to tell oil industry management and federal, state and local officials that we all want safe refineries. Safe workplaces don't just protect workers, but also the communities where we live and work. Please support the USW Oil workers in their efforts to secure a fair contract that will protect the health and safety of workers and communities!

Please sign the petition here.

Three U.S. Oil Plants Targeted by Union Strike Report Upsets

(Bloomberg) -- At least three of the nine U.S. oil refineries targeted by a nationwide strike of United Steelworkers union members have reported upsets and unplanned repairs since their workers walked out earlier this month.

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s Deer Park refinery in Texas had a unit upset on Feb. 8. Tesoro Corp.’s Carson plant near Los Angeles performed unscheduled repairs after a unit breakdown. Marathon Petroleum Corp.’s 451,000-barrel-a-day Galveston Bay refinery in Texas, the biggest of the plants on strike by capacity, leaked diesel from an ultracracker...

For the full article, go here.

Fighting Alongside the United Steelworkers

USW Building International Solidarity

USW members and leaders are meeting with allies in Europe this week, building solidarity with other global unions as the USW’s oil industry unfair labor practice (ULP) strike enters its second week.

USW International President Leo W. Gerard has also requested a meeting with the CEO of Royal Dutch Shell, headquartered in the Netherlands, which is leading negotiations on behalf of the oil companies. The company has yet to respond to Gerard’s request...

For the full article, go here.

USW, Allies in Europe United in Fight for Safety at Oil Refineries

PITTSBURGH (February 9) – A delegation of striking refinery workers from the United Steelworkers (USW) will bring their campaign for a safer oil industry to Europe this week, meeting with allies from labor unions in the Netherlands and Great Britain.

The group, led by USW District 11 Director Emil Ramirez, includes striking workers from refineries owned by Shell, Marathon and Tesoro. Shell, which has taken the lead on bargaining for the companies, has its headquarters in the Netherlands...

For the full article, go here.

Thousands of USW Oil Workers, Supporters Take Action in National Day of Action...

On Saturday, February 7th USW oil workers and supporters took action at oil refineries around the country in support of the ongoing unfair labor practice strike against the oil industry and the fight for safe workplaces and healthy communities. Workers rallied at plant gates, held community cook-outs, marched, and picketed to demand good faith bargaining and fair contracts that improve refinery safety for workers and their communities...

For the full article, go here.

Demanding respect for worker safety

In Anacortes, Wash., last week, approximately 200 Tesoro workers began picketing the oil refinery where an explosion incinerated seven of their co-workers five years earlier.

Butch Cleve walks that picket line, serving now as strike captain for the USW local union at Tesoro. On the day of the catastrophe in 2010, Cleve walked the coroner to the shrouded bodies of three of his friends...

For the full article, go here.

Photos of USW showing support and solidarity

Our 13-555 president Vaughn Johnson and some members from our local showing solidarity at the LyondelBasell plant on February 7.

Our Sub-District Director Sonny Sanders and others from Baton Rouge showing support of USW workers on strike.

The USW Oil Workers has been sharing many wonderful photos of USW members and their families showing support and solidarity all around the country. Please visit their photo stream here on their Facebook page.

Update 2/8/15

All groups reported on the tremendous support on Saturday (International Day of Action). We had a few members from P66 and Sasol drive over to Texas and visit with the striking members. The groups on strike are still reporting that there are no issues holding the line and no reported members crossing.

The Strategic Campaigns Group is sending yard signs our way so we will get them out as soon as they show up. We are still working to get something set up for donations from the membership to be given to the striking groups in our District.

International is still waiting on the requested data from Friday but have plans to meet with Shell this Monday morning as I understand it. The next call will be Wednesday.

In Solidarity,

--Neal

USW Oil Workers at BP Refineries in Indiana and Ohio Join Unfair Labor Practice Strike

PITTSBURGH – The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that workers at BP’s Whiting, Indiana and Toledo, Ohio refineries are joining the union’s unfair labor practice strike against the oil industry that began on Feb. 1, after the companies failed to address serious concerns regarding the health and safety of workers and their communities...

For the full article, go here.

Safe Refineries Save Lives

Safe workplaces don't just protect workers, but also the communities where we live and work. Please support the USW Oil Workers in their efforts to secure a fair contract that will protect the health and safety of workers and communities!

Please sign the petition here.

2/7/15

Everyone needs to think about this.

In 4 months, if the International settles this strike and members return to their jobs, our local contract will be ending. The companies will be pretty pissed and more than likely not be in a friendly mood for our talks.

Who do we ask for help when they force us out? The members that are striking right now...and we cannot even show some solidarity by putting signs in the windows of our vehicles at work? (I saw one truck today with signs displayed in the windows at work).

We need to show solidarity for the members that were called out to support this effort as we may be next. How will we ask for support when we struggle to give it to them in their time of need?

If we cannot show unwavering support right now the company will not take the Union seriously at the table and we will lose it all.

We have to stand together in SOLIDARITY to win this fight.

If you did not get a sign, let me know and I will meet you at the hall after work or before work and get them to you.

--Neal

Update 2/6/15

I did contact the District office today and we now have a list of locals and the address for each to send donations. We are working a few different ideas of how to donate and will be putting this information out as soon as we get it completed. Give us a little more time to get the details worked out.

I've ordered a few of the 4' X 6' yard signs and a pile of bright yellow arm bands with USW "Solidarity is Strength" on them, they should be in shortly. We'll get them passed out asap. Still working on some other items to get the word out. The union printing shops as you can imagine are very busy especially around Texas.

We did get some new signs from International today with "Safe Refiners" on them I believe. I'll have to look a little closer to make sure.

Tomorrow should be a very interesting day as support actions will be taking place around the country. Remember this may just be the beginning so plan for a long strike and hope for a short one. Don't believe everything you read or hear in the media as some are not friendly to the Union. If you have questions about whats going on please ask one of the committee and we will get an answer if we don't know.

"ONE DAY LONGER"

In Solidarity,

--Neal

Health and Safety Must Come First in Oil Bargaining

USW Local 12-591 President Steve Garey and progressive talk show host Leslie Marshall this week discussed national oil bargaining and the urgent safety concerns that forced 3,800 oil workers to walk out on Feb. 1.

For the full article, and to listen to audio of the talk show, go here.

#‎USWWorks‬ ‪#‎NOBP2015‬ ‪#‎SafeRefineries‬

Protests on Feb. 7, 2015‬

It's going to be very busy in Texas City and Houston at LyondellBasell as I've heard that there are 3 buses full of members, wives, children and retirees headed that way on Saturday to show support at these locations. I'm pretty sure this is what what was said on one of the calls. If anyone wants to drive over there and show support, by all means take a ride.

--Neal

A day of action for Feb. 7, 2015‬

The USW International is calling for a day of action across the country on Saturday. The committee is either working or has family issues to attend to so we didn't get anything planned. If the membership wants to do something that's great. Some ideas I have would be to meet at a public park and have our "Solidarity in Strength" signs displayed for all to see things like this to show we support the work that the international and the striking members are doing for us and our future members.

If we do get together, we need to please make sure we act in a professional manner so we don't give the company nor the media any negative publicity to show us in a negative light.

If anyone does take action please take pictures and send them to me. The USW International has asked for pictures of any actions taken.

--Neal

Feb. 5th conference call update‬

Another call tonight with all groups from around the country. The International and company are still meeting and working the issues. International is waiting on some information from the company as of tonight and will be reviewing it when the company gets it together. The report we got tonight is that the policy committee will be taking a break until Sunday so the next update will be then. The policy committee is heading back to their home locals to meet with their groups. The negotiations are still going slow but the feelings are still that the company is now taking us more seriously at the table.

The groups out on strike are very upbeat and all are commenting on the tremendous support that they are getting from the International, locals from across the country and from the communities that are close to the striking refiners. Every group is reporting that there have been no represented employees crossing the picket lines at this time. All striking groups are reporting that they stand strong in support of the International negotiations and to keep pushing the company to do the right thing.

The International did stress that while they are still at the table and talking, if things stall or the company starts regressing, more actions may be needed.

We are working to get in contact with the District office to find out what the best form of help is at this time for the groups that are out on strike. I've contacted a printing shop about 10 or so large yard signs (4' X 6') that can be placed in high traffic areas around Lake Charles and Sulphur, some large window sun shades for vehicles, armbands to be worn on your sleeve, signs for local businesses that want to support the workers, and some coffee mugs with the fair contract logo.

For everyone who didn't get a sign at the gate action the other day, if you want one please attend the next meeting on Tuesday and we will give you one. We may try and plan another action day to catch the shifts that were off for the last one.

Please try and display the signs in your windows at work and around the community to show support for the negotiations and the members out on strike. You can bet that local management is reporting to Houston about the actions taking place at each facility and how much support there is for the issues on the table and the brothers and sisters on strike.

There is not a more critical time to show our support and send a clear message to our local management that we will support the negotiations and everyone on strike for as long as it takes.

"ONE DAY LONGER"

--Neal

Strike reveals why companies suffer from skilled worker shortage

This is a great article on the true issues surrounding the work stoppage.

By Chris Tomlinson, Business Columnist, Houston Chronicle, February 4, 2015.

A new facet of the skilled worker shortage is revealed.

After a year of listening to employers complain about how hard it is to find good help anymore, a breakdown in contract negotiations between oil companies and the United Steelworkers provides some insight into why young people aren't filling those well-paying manufacturing jobs in the refining and petrochemical sector...

To read the full article, click here.

Organized labor showing signs of life

On Sunday, when 3,800 members of the United Steelworkers (USW) walked off their jobs at nine oil refineries across the country (including two in my home state of California), it marked the first national oil refinery strike in more than three decades, going all the way back to 1980. Congratulations, USW. With this strike, organized labor is finally showing signs of life...

For the full article, go here.

Important safety reminder

To contact our Local, please click here.

Oil Bargaining info page

The link below is for the page dedicated to the Negotiations efforts.

About Oil Bargaining.

USW.org

Visit USW.org for a great source of videos and information on what is going on with the Strike efforts.

Striking California oil refinery workers demand better safety, wages

Some good information on the true reason a national strike was called. Some of the non-Union friendly media have tried to make this into a wage issue and refuse to listen to the real issues.

CARSON, Calif. — Smoke is billowing from the mammoth Tesoro oil refinery, but none of the plant’s 800 union workers are on the job.

They’re outside, picketing at each of the eight gates to the refinery. Truckers and motorists honk their horns in support as they whiz by on 223rd Street in this industrial city south of Los Angeles, home of a soccer stadium used by the Los Angeles Galaxy.

It is now Day 4 of a strike by 3,800 oil refinery workers at nine plants in California, Texas, Kentucky and Washington state, which represent 10 percent of U.S. refining capacity. The strike could expand to other sites...

For the full article, go here.

One Day Longer-Stronger Than Ever

Members of USW Local 13-243 visit USW Local 13-227 on the picket lines at LyondellBasel in Houston. ‪#‎NOBP2015‬ ‪#‎USW‬

Text Alerts

Get connected and stay informed! Sign up to get text message updates from the USW about National Oil Bargaining bargaining!

Sign up from your phone by texting the word OIL to 47486‬

Know your Weingarten rights!

To contact our Local, please click here.

Getting ready to do whatever it takes to win fair contracts in the oil industry

For the full article, go here.