The Oilworker: May 2021

Brothers and Sisters,

As many of you have now heard, ExxonMobil locked out our sisters and brothers in Beaumont, Texas on May 1, a decision that was unnecessary and malicious. Our members worked hard over the past 16 months – during the pandemic and through natural disasters – to safely maintain and operate the facility, only to be rewarded for their sacrifice by a door slammed in their faces.

Nevertheless, they remain committed to negotiating a fair contract that protects their safety, security and seniority. ExxonMobil’s blatant attempts to divide and conquer will fail because our members and our solidarity remain as strong as ever.

Many of you have reached out about supporting Local 13-243. Please contact Hoot Landry or Bryan Gross for ways to do so.

Line 5 fight continues

I also want to update you on our work to keep Enbridge Line 5 operational. Members of Local 912 in Toledo have been working tirelessly to bring attention to the consequences of a potential Line 5 disruption and the need for the replacement line.

This included testifying in the Ohio House of Representatives, which on March 25 passed a resolution urging the continued operation of the line. USW members will also testify in the Michigan legislature and participate in an action outside the Michigan state capitol on May 11.

These union brothers and sisters also need your help. Please sign the petition to show support for our members at USW Local 912. You can also visit our website for more information.

Safety incident at Galveston Bay Refinery

Two members of Local 13-1 received medical attention after a May 4 chemical leak at Marathon’s Galveston Bay Refinery in Texas City, Texas. The leak, which involved an alkylation unit, also resulted in a shelter-in-place order in the area surrounding the refinery.  

Finally, Shell announced this week that it reached a deal with HollyFrontier over the sale of its Puget Sound Refinery in Anacortes, Wash. The transaction is expected to close in the final quarter of this year. We will keep you posted as we learn more.

Stay safe – and once again, please lend our fellow USW members your support during these difficult times.

In solidarity,

Mike Smith
NOBP Chair

Press Inquiries

Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Jess Kamm at 412-562-2446

USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor R.J. Hufnagel

For industry specific inquiries,
Call USW Communications at 412-562-2442

Mailing Address

United Steelworkers
Communications Department
60 Blvd. of the Allies
Pittsburgh, PA 15222