Workers at New Flyer Industries, concerned about issues such as mandatory overtime and safety on the job, are rallying and mobilizing in advance of Friday’s expiration of their union contract.
Communications Workers of America Local 7304 represents 570 workers at the St. Cloud production facility, which makes clean-energy, high-performance buses. New Flyer is the nation’s largest bus manufacturer.
Major issues in the bargaining include excessive forced overtime, health concerns over Chrominum-6 and other chemicals used in the workplace and a call for management neutrality in union organizing efforts at other New Flyer locations, the union said.
Some employees have been forced to work six days a week for more than nine months, the workers said.
“I don’t get a lot of time with my son,” said James Strohman. “I spend more time here than I do at home. This doesn’t work well for me.”
Workers held rallies March 16 and 27 outside the plant.
“We’re fighting for basic things against corporate greed,” said Mona Meyer, president of the CWA Minnesota State Council.