FORT WORTH (WBAP/KLIF News ) – Employees of another major manufacturer are the Metroplex is moving closer to a strike.
Unionized employees at Molson Coors’ Fort Worth brewery authorized a strike on Sunday amid tense negotiations with their employer. If the union’s national leaders call for a strike, employees at the local facility will walk off the job.
While details of the contract proposals have not been made public, the majority of Local 997 Molson Coors Teamsters voted to reject the offer.
In a statement, Local 997 Molson Coors Teamsters Chapter Treasurer Rick Miedema said the company has made record profits over the last few years but that hasn’t caught up to increased pay for workers, who are struggling with inflation.
““Molson Coors is on a bender, drunk on sky-high profits and losing sight with every passing day of what’s really going on in the world. Workers are demanding their worth, and there is no way in hell the members of Teamsters Local 997 are going to accept a concessionary contract that would gut health care for our families and disrespect our work,” said Rick Miedema, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 997. “We are in this fight for as long as it takes, the entire Teamsters Union is behind us, and we will not back down until we secure a contract that values the membership,” he said.
Workers are asking for better pay as well as improvements to health care and retirement benefits.
According to a press release, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters announced it would increase future strike benefits to $1,000 per week to Teamster Local 997.
“Molson Coors negotiators have wasted time on insulting proposals and regressive offers despite having months to reach a fair three-year agreement. The beer company now faces serious risk of an imminent work stoppage just weeks ahead of a possible nationwide strike by 5,000 Teamsters battling Anheuser-Busch for their own contract.
The strike benefit for Molson Coors Teamsters will go into effect if the company fails to come to terms soon on an agreement that rewards workers with their fair share of record-setting profits. Local 997 is seeking pay raises and improved health care and retirement benefits for more than 420 Teamsters who make, package, and warehouse Molson Coors brews, and maintain the Fort Worth brewery,” said the release.
Molson Coors said its five other breweries can make up for production if the Fort Worth location’s employees strike.
The Fort Worth facility is the only brewery that services the entire Western region of the United States with Molson Coors products that include Topo Chico, Simply, Pabst, and Yuengling, among other major beverage brands.
The Teamsters believe this gives them leverage in negotiations because the company might have to outsource packaging for some of its brands.
The brewery is located at 7001 South Freeway and employees about 520 people.
It’s the second strike that impacted the Metroplex in recent months, thousands of workers at the General Motors plant in Arlington secured new contracts with their employers after walking off the job during a nationwide strike last October.
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