Firestone Employees Threaten Strike Action
Union employees at the Firestone Polymers plant in Orange, Texas, in the US are considering strike action in protest against alleged plans to replace a number of union members and reduce the pay of others. The local union, part of the USW, alleges that management wants to replace about 20 operator-helpers with contract employees who he said would earn less, and reduce pay of 22 other union workers by US$8.40 per hour.
Firestone Polymers division president John Vincent was originally scheduled to meet with employees on a visit to the factory on February 19, but several days prior to this he released a letter stating that he no longer would. A spokesman for parent company Bridgestone Americas Inc. said Vincent would not be able to comment, and that the company does not want to “negotiate in the media.”
Firestone Polymers produces synthetic rubber used in tyres and other consumer products. A date for industrial action, if it indeed takes place, has not been set.