Demands for better wages and benefits is part of the reason why several workers are on strike at a local manufacturer known as Erie Strayer Company.
About a dozen Erie Strayer workers have been on strike since 5 a.m. on October 4th.
Several Erie Strayer Company workers are asking for better wages as well as a dental health plan.
“All we want is good wages, and benefits, and working conditions for the guys, and the company doesn’t want that. They’ll spend the money on security. They’ll spend the money dragging negotiations out over six months paying their attorneys and everything that goes with it, but what they won’t do is give it to the guys,” said Tracy Cutright, Vice President of Iron Workers Regional Shop Local Union 851.
Erie Strayer Company started in 1912 and has developed into a 175,000 square foot facility.
Formerly the Erie Steel Construction Company, Erie Strayer Company now manufactures concrete batching equipment.
The company is offering workers a five cent raise in their first year of work.
Cutright said that under a five year contract workers would receive a 50 cent raise.
One union representative said that many of those workers have shown their loyalty by continuing to work throughout the pandemic. He said that these workers are asking for the same loyalty from their company.
One local attorney however believes unions are no longer necessary and that strikes have become less common in the last five years.
“Unions don’t have any real influence in the work place other than to ask or to strike, and strikes are always awful. Strikes are expensive. Strikes are time consuming. Strikes are very risky. People creates enemies,” said Geri Nietupski, Attorney.
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