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6/01/2006

Peabody Miners Fighting for a Union

Source: AFL-CIO Now Blog

Tired of being forced to work overtime every week and getting precious little in return, nonunion coal miners who work for Peabody Energy, the world’s largest coal company, have joined together with the AFL-CIO, the Mine Workers, community religious leaders and miners in Australia to say, “Enough! We want a union.”

Peabody has systematically closed its union mines and replaced production with nonunion mines over the past 15 years, says Bob Gaydos, UMWA’s assistant organizing director. Today, only 40 percent of Peabody’s miners worldwide are union members, he says, down from about 70 percent in the 1990s.

For the past couple of years, the UMWA has responded to the requests of hundreds of nonunion miners at Peabody’s facilities across the country for assistance in organizing unions. In December 2005, the workers launched the Justice at Peabody campaign. Peabody, which provides 10 percent of the nation’s electricity and 3 percent of the world’s power, employs some 8,300 miners at 33 mines in nine states. (MORE >>>)

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