Support Honeywell Locked Out Workers on October 11th

As the lockout at Honeywell rolls into its second month, members of USW Local 7-669 and our allies are staying strong and we’re stepping up the fight for a fair contract at Honeywell. We’re mobilizing in Metropolis, hitting the road and taking our fight to Washington, DC, and building support around the world. With your continued support we’ll last one day longer and win a fair contract at Honeywell!

What’s at stake in Metropolis?

One of the biggest issues on the bargaining table in Metropolis is the company’s demand to expand contracting out language to staff large portions of the facility with outside contractors. We’re concerned that this will eliminate local jobs and create unnecessary hazards inside the facility.

Workers in Metropolis convert uranium to be used as nuclear fuel. On a day-to-day basis we work with radioactive materials and huge volumes of hazardous chemicals. A single accident could lead to a release that could put thousands of families in the area at risk.

We’re concerned that turning key pieces of work over to contractors who are unfamiliar with the facility and are not even Honeywell employees could cause confusion and increase the likelihood of a serious accident at the facility. Honeywell should take responsibility for managing the facility and not leave key pieces of running and maintaining the facility to outside contractors.

Since the end of the last lockout in 2010 we have lost 83 local, family-supporting jobs to outside contractors. If the company gets its way we could lose as many as 100 more jobs to contractors.

We set up a display in front of the plant to show our community what’s at stake in this round of contract negotiations. Apparently the company didn’t like the display because they parked a big trailer in front of their sign to obscure the view from the road…but not before we got some photos.

Taking the Fight to Washington, DC

Last week, members of USW Local 7-669 took the fight to the nation’s capitol to enlist support from key elected leaders and meet with administrative officials. On September 23, members of Local 7-669 joined the USW’s Atomic Energy Worker’s Council for a series of lobby visits, bringing our message to the Department of Energy and several members of Congress.

Then on September 25, a team of locked out workers took to the streets in Washington, DC. Locked out workers rallied at Honeywell’s legislative offices in Washington, DC at the base of Capitol Hill. During the rally, locked out members inflated a 30 foot tall ‘Fat Cat’ depiction of Honeywell CEO David Cote and attempted to deliver the more than 3,200 petitions that were signed by supporters from around Metropolis and round the world.

While they were in DC, locked out workers also visited lobbying firms of Akin GumpOB C GroupMcBee Strategic, and Duberstein Group, as well as Honeywell’s Washington corporate offices.Honeywell has ramped up political spending over the last several years hasspent nearly 6 million dollars on the current election cycle alone, and has a major lobbying presence in the nation’s capital.

Taking to the Streets in Metropolis on October 11

On October 11th, Local 7-669 is planning a mass rally in march in Metropolis, IL. Hundreds of supporters from around the region will be converging in Metropolis to stand with the locked out workers. The march starts at 12 noon at the Old Clark School (619 East 5th Street in Metropolis) and will be followed by a mass rally at Massac State Park.

Find more information and RSVP for the rally, click here!

Global Support!

Workers around the world are standing with the locked out members of USW Local 7-669. Unions representing Honeywell workers in Brazil, Turkey, Italy, France, Germany, and the UK have written to Honeywell to call on the company to end the lockout and bring the back the experienced unionized workforce.

IndustriALL, global union federation representing 50 million workers in 140 countries around the world has been particularly helpful, weighing in with Honeywell’s major customers and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission as well as Honeywell Management.

Read all of the letters of support online here.

Help us Keep Up the Fight!

If you can’t make it to Metropolis on the 11th, there are still some important ways you can support the members of USW Local 7-669 in this important struggle.

  • Sign and share our petition calling on Honeywell to end the lockout and calling on our local, state, and federal officials to intervene to hold Honeywell accountable. You can sign our petition online here.
  • Donate to our Lockout Fund. Members of Local 7-669 are preparing for a long and challenging lockout and any support you can provide would be incredibly valuable for our members during this challenging time. Donations can be sent to USW 7-669 at PO Box 601, Metropolis, IL 62960.
  • Adopt a Locked Out Family. If you or your local union wants to help on an ongoing basis and make a deeper connection with some of our sisters and brothers here in Metropolis, think about adopting a locked out family working directly with them to provide ongoing support for their family through the lockout. If you’re interested in adopting a family, e-mail and our Lockout Defense Committee can help connect your local with a locked out family that could use your support.
  • Invite a Locked Out Worker to Visit Your Local. Locked out workers are available to hit the road and visit local union meetings, conferences, and other events to give a first hand account of the struggle we’re facing in Metropolis. If you’re interested in hosting a locked out worker, e-mail us we’ll figure out a way to get a locked out worker out to visit you.

On behalf of the 149 families of United Steelworkers Local 7-669 I want to thank you all for your ongoing support and solidarity in this incredibly challenging fight. We’re holding strong here in Metropolis and we are committed to winning the fight for justice at Honeywell.

See you on the streets on October 11th. 

In solidarity,

Stephen Lech

President, USW Local 7-669 

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