Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Why do they want to drive down our wages and hurt our community?

That's the question asked by Michael LeBerf, president of the Retail Wholesale and Department Store Union's Local 220, in Williamson, N.Y.

Local 220 workers are striking the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, which owns the Mott's factory that employs them. Though Dr. Pepper Snapple earned $555 million last year, management demanded wage cuts of $1.50 an hour, elimination of pensions for new employees, a 20 percent cut in their 401(k) plans and increased health insurance costs.

Michael Winship writes about the workers' plight in the Huffington Post. Ever since the family-owned Mott's was taken over by Dr. Pepper Snapple, he writes,

...the family spirit at the factory that once included an effective worker-management safety committee, Christmas parties, Easter hams and company picnics has been destroyed. Corporate greed, they say, has marched in with a vengeance.

The company's response to the strike: workers are overpaid and living beyond their means. CEO Larry Young, of course, saw his salary rise 113 percent over the last three years to $6.5 million

Read it and weep.