Union urges locked-out Texas refinery workers to reject Exxon contract offer – statement
By Erwin Seba
HOUSTON (Reuters) – United Steelworkers (USW) has urged locked-out workers at Exxon Mobil Corp’s refinery in Beaumont, Texas to reject a company contract offer in a vote scheduled for Tuesday , according to a union statement reviewed by Reuters on Thursday.
“The union is briefing its members on the details of the offer and is asking members to come together and vote no to this sub-par offer,” the union said in a message to the 650 locked members. -out from the local Steelworkers. 13-243 in Beaumont.
The next contract vote is the first to be taken by workers at the 369,024 barrel per day (bpd) Beaumont refinery and adjacent lubricating oil plant since negotiations began in January and the lockdown out of workers on May 1.
Bryan Gross, international representative of the Steelworkers, confirmed that the statement was released by leaders of Local 13-243. Gross declined to comment further.
An Exxon spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Exxon said workers were on lockdown to avoid disruption due to a possible strike. The company operated the refinery at reduced production levels with supervisors and temporary replacements.
The United Steelworkers continues to oppose Exxon’s proposal to eliminate seniority, giving workers a say in assignments.
The union also said Exxon’s contract proposal would result in some job cuts over the next three years. The statement also spelled out the positions that would not benefit from salary increases this year and in the years to come.
The ratification vote will come two weeks after the US National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) received a petition signed by 30% of Exxon workers calling for the union to be abolished.
The NLRB is in the regional investigation and determination phase of considering the removal request, which could lead to a vote in the future, according to the agency.
(Reporting by Erwin Seba, editing by Chris Reese and Richard Pullin)