USW Receives Initial Proposal from ArcelorMittal

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The full USW negotiating committee met today with ArcelorMittal management for an overview of the company’s initial contract proposal.

Overall, the company has cherry-picked parts of other USW contracts from a variety of industries to form the basis of a labor agreement that management believes will make the company more profitable.

The company has proposed a three-year contract with no wage increases throughout its term, along with a proposal to reduce incentive payments while eliminating incentive altogether for workers in Labor Grade 1.

In addition, the company’s demands include major reductions in vacation pay and sickness and accident benefits.

Management has also proposed major changes to health care for both active and retired union workers that are designed to reduce coverage and increase costs, including monthly premium contributions for active employees of $150 for single coverage and $250 for families. The proposal also included significant increases in monthly premium contributions for current and future retirees that could more than triple their current contributions.

The company is also seeking to stop all contributions to the VEBA, which will negatively impact current and future retirees’ contributions and eventually eliminate benefits for legacy retirees.

ArcelorMittal’s proposals include a lower, two-tier system of compensation and benefits for new hires, and the company has reserved the right to propose more concessions.

The committee is continuing to review these proposals, and we are committed to negotiating a fair agreement that does not include drastic reductions in compensation for active and retired employees.

Your continued support and solidarity is of utmost importance for us to reach the fair agreement we deserve. We will continue to work throughout the week to provide the company with a response.

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