USW Members Ratify Three-Year First Contract at Cliffs Northshore Mining

Contact: Tony Montana,, 412-562-2592

The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that members have voted to ratify a three-year first contract at Cleveland Cliffs Northshore Mining, where approximately 400 workers mine taconite in Babbitt, Minn., make iron ore pellets in Silver Bay, Minn., and transport products and tailings.

“Thanks to the hard work of our bargaining committee and the solidarity of our newly organized members, we negotiated a fair first contract with Cliffs,” said USW District 11 Director Emil Ramirez, who represents workers in Minnesota and eight other states. “The ratified contract will improve wages, benefits and working conditions while enhancing the security of our jobs.”

The agreement includes a lump sum bonus, annual wage increases, enhanced protections for job security and improvements in occupational health and safety. The contract also features high quality health insurance with no monthly premiums as well as defined benefit pensions, while maintaining an existing 401(k) with company-matching contributions.

“Workers were determined to win a contract that addressed workplace health and safety, retirement security and other critical issues,” Ramirez said. “We proved once again that we are most powerful when we stand together and speak with one voice.”

The USW also represents approximately 2,000 workers at four other Cliffs mining facilities in Minnesota and northern Michigan. Northshore Mining was the last remaining taconite mine on Minnesota’s Iron Range without a union.

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

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