GARY, Ind. — United Steelworkers (USW) union members and allies demonstrated this past week in two separate rallies for a fair contract for workers who produce steel. Seventeen thousand US Steelworkers and thousands more at ArcelorMittal began industry-wide contract bargaining in basic steel about a month ago. Their current contracts expire on Sept. 1, and these two big steel companies have come with terrible proposals for cutting deep into active worker and retiree benefits, dangerous work rule changes, and proposals that will severely weaken bargaining rights.
These tough negotiations come at a time of unprecedented attack on unions by corporate-sponsored far rightwing politicians, think tanks and media. Already the aluminum company, ATI, has locked out 2,200 USW workers around the country.
But the union membership and leadership are fired up and rallying with allies around the country at the different plant gates of each company.