Kellogg Company reports that 1,400 workers at cereal plants are currently in their 11th week of striking. tentative agreementto end the strike. The union is expected vote on Monday.
The Bakery, Confectionary, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union did not release a statement on the agreement. Workers also rejected a deal. just two weeks ago. The company is under increasing pressure from the public as well as progressive lawmakers. it is hopefulThe union will be satisfied by the new agreement.
However, the company’s latest offer fails to get rid of a two-tier employee structureThis allows the company to pay less for new workers and offer fewer benefits. This is the lowest tier currently. It applies to around 30 percent employees. Striking workers have said thatThey are determined to remove this structure, and they soundly rejected a previous tentative arrangement from the company that failed to address this concern.
Shortly after workers had rejected the deal, the company announced plans for permanent replacement of the 1,400 striking employees. This was a drastic move that labor advocates and striking workers said showed the company’s bad faith in negotiations that have been going on for over a year.
Kellogg is facing a boycott from October 1st, when workers started striking. This action sparked people to call for a boycott of Kellogg. on the “antiwork” subreddit to flood the company’s online job portal, spamming the websiteAccording to forum users, it crashed multiple times.
Influential lawmakers have called attention to the company’s union-busting efforts. President Joe Biden condemned the company’s decision to replace striking workers, saying that he was “deeply troubled” by the move and that it is “an existential attack on the union.”
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), meanwhile, is travelling to Battle Creek, Michigan on Friday to rally with the workers and stand up to Kellogg’s “corporate greed.” In October, he led a letter signed by six Democratic senators to Kellogg’s CEO signaling their staunch support of the striking workers.
“Kellogg’s workers made the company BILLIONS during a pandemic by working 12-hour shifts, some for more than 100 days in a row. But Kellogg’s is now choosing corporate greed over the workers they once called ‘heroes,’” Sanders said in a tweet.
In fact, workers report having to work Weeks of 80 hoursWith few days off. “We don’t have weekends, really. We just work seven days a week, sometimes 100 to 130 days in a row,” Trevor Bidelman, president of the Battle Creek plant’s local, told The Guardian. “For 28 days, the machines run, then rest three days for cleaning. They don’t even treat us as well as they do their machinery.”
The company has been vilified its striking workersThe union claimed that their demands for better wages and equal treatment of all employees are unrealistic. The reality is that the company has posted high profits as the pandemic has driven up demand, and the company’s CEO received a massive compensation package of over $11.6 millionFor the fiscal year ending in 2021. This is 279x the median employee salary at the company.