November 2, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Toledo, OH – The last of four unions at Libbey Inc.’s glassware plant here ratified a contract Oct. 25, ending a 14-day strike.
Dave Nelson, president of Glass Molders Plastics Local 59, announced that members overwhelmingly approved a three-year deal that they had narrowly rejected two days earlier.
“Guys have been out a long time and it’s starting to take a toll on everybody,” Nelson told the Toledo Blade. Libbey, which calls itself the leading table-glassware maker in the Americas, has about 750 union employees in the Toledo area. When their contracts expired at the end of September, all four unions rejected the company’s proposal, with Local 59 and International Association of Machinists Lodge 105 going on strike and United Steelworkers Locals 700T and 65T honoring their picket line. According to Libbey, they will get 5% raises over the three years, half a percentage point more than it originally offered, and both sides compromised on mandatory-overtime policies. The Steelworkers approved the deal on Oct. 20, and the Machinists did on Oct. 23, but Local 59, whose about 100 members operate glass-production equipment, held out. The company brought in scabs to run the plant, but union members told The Blade that only two of 11 lines were running. Read more