Chicago workers occupy factory

Breaking news – Hat tip to Lee Sustar at SocialistWorker.org.

WORKERS OCCUPYING the Republic Windows & Doors factory slated for closure are vowing to remain in the Chicago plant until they win the $1.5 million in severance and vacation pay owed them by management.

In a tactic rarely used in the U.S. since the labor struggles of the 1930s, the workers, members of United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE) Local 1110, refused to leave the plant on December 5, its last scheduled day of operation.

“We decided to do it because this is money that belongs to us,” said Maria Roman, who’s worked at the plant for eight years. “These are our rights.”

rest of story at

http://socialistworker.org/2008/12/06/republic-window-occupation

Jobs With Justice has launched an email campaign for these workers, aimed at Bank of America, which is behind management’s actions.

Hold Bank of America Accountable
Only weeks after taking $25 Billion in bailout money, Bank of America is turning its back on hundreds of workers making energy efficient doors and windows in Chicago by refusing to continue credit to Republic Windows and Doors.  To make matters even worse than putting 300 people out of work, Bank of America has instructed Republic to refuse to pay workers compensation they are legally entitled to, either earned vacation pay or the severance pay legally required under the WARN Act, in lieu of proper notice of plant closing.

Go to 
http://www.unionvoice.org/campaign/bankofamerica/

 

Another report from CBS 2 in Chicago (link found on Labourstart web page)
http://cbs2chicago.com/local/republic.windows.sitin.2.880850.html

Update from Associated Press-

Angry laid-off workers occupy factory in Chicago
By RUPA SHENOY – 2 hours ago

CHICAGO (AP) — Workers who got three days’ notice that their factory was shutting its doors have occupied the building and say they won’t go home without assurances they’ll get severance and vacation pay.

About 250 union workers occupied the Republic Windows and Doors plant in shifts Saturday while union leaders outside criticized a Wall Street bailout they say is leaving laborers behind.

Leah Fried, an organizer with the United Electrical Workers, said the Chicago-based vinyl window manufacturer failed to give 60 days’ notice required by law before shutting down.

During the two-day peaceful takeover, workers have been shoveling snow and cleaning the building, Fried said.

“We’re doing something we haven’t done since the 1930s, so we’re trying to make it work,” she said, referring to a tactic most famously used in 1936-37 by General Motors factory workers in Flint, Mich., to help unionize the U.S. auto industry.

read rest at
http://tinyurl.com/5hzxkr

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One Response to “Chicago workers occupy factory”

  1. 200 laid-off workers won’t leave until they get their money « Goodtimepolitics Says:

    […] Chicago workers occupy factory Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Utterly ready for a breakWorkers’ Rights For […]

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