Steelworkers at Alcoa to vote on strike authorization today

2014-05-14T04:30:00Z 2014-05-14T05:13:55Z Steelworkers at Alcoa to vote on strike authorization todayJennifer DeWitt The Quad-City Times

On the eve of its contract deadline with Alcoa Inc., the United Steelworkers will stage an informational picket and take a strike authorization vote today.

Local 105, one of 10 Alcoa plants covered by a master agreement, will picket from 2-4 p.m. in front of Alcoa Davenport Works, Riverdale. Union members will march from the Bettendorf union hall at about 1:45 p.m.

Mike Nicholas, the local's financial secretary, said Steelworkers at all master contract locations are planning events today as negotiations continue in Pittsburgh between the company and the union. "They're not all having pickets, some are doing parking lot rallies," he said. "We feel last (contract) time, our very last picket made some big impressions on the people in Pittsburgh."

The contract expires at midnight Thursday.

The two sides began negotiating in late April on a new master agreement that will cover more than 5,000 employees and 11 locals. Of  the units, Local 105 is the largest local with 1,700 union members at Davenport Works.

Nicholas said the local also will hold a strike authorization vote ahead of the informational picket and throughout the day to accommodate all the shifts. He said the vote would give approval to the bargaining reps "to tell the company they have the votes from the members that can put us out (on strike)." 

Meanwhile, Davenport Works also is preparing for the possibility of a strike should an agreement not be reached by the deadline Thursday.

"Our goal is to reach a fair and competitive agreement by the deadline," said Alcoa spokesman John Riches. "However, we have to take steps in case of a work stoppage."

Riches would not go into details, but said the company "plans to operate the plant" if necessary.

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(9) Comments

  1. JKnox
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    JKnox - May 14, 2014 4:55 pm
    I have a BS in engineering. Bet I could make the cut.
  2. Constitutionalist
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    Constitutionalist - May 14, 2014 4:15 pm
    Why are steelworkers representing aluminum workers? We need an aluminum workers union.
  3. SCAB
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    SCAB - May 14, 2014 4:10 pm
    Longjohn you have to understand that under normal conditions you may be correct but during a strike all that goes out the window.
    These companies already have plan B and C in place long before a strike occurs. Replacement workers or "scabs" as some people say are already on standby in case of a strike and you need NO special education to work there. Heck some even have prison records.

    If they choose to strike, they will fill those positions with whoever they can find period.
  4. longjohn412
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    longjohn412 - May 14, 2014 3:35 pm
    Without a degree your chances of getting hired are essentially ZERO You need STEM education beyond High School in order to compete

    The first thing they do at Alcoa with job applications is separate the college educated from the rest and throw the others in the circular filing cabinet ...... And even then they have several times more applications than they have job openings ...

    The only other way is to get someone in the Union to Vet you and you'll need to acquire a Journeyman's card

  5. snowman05
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    snowman05 - May 14, 2014 11:16 am
    Yeah not true little john.

    I respect the workers and their rights and hope this is resolved quickly.
  6. Santony25
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    Santony25 - May 14, 2014 11:13 am
    You don't need a degree.
  7. Lil momma
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    Lil momma - May 14, 2014 7:26 am
    You don't need a associates degree to work there
  8. longjohn412
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    longjohn412 - May 14, 2014 6:33 am
    Do you have a college degree? You need a minimum of an Associates Degree for them to even consider you.

    Nearly everyone at Alcoa has one, even the steelworkers..... It's a SKILLED trade and I doubt you have any of them .....
  9. JKnox
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    JKnox - May 14, 2014 5:58 am
    Great 1700 new jobs may open up!
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