Whirlpool newsletter warns union about rally - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Whirlpool newsletter warns union about rally

By Nathan Ryder - bio | email | Twitter
Posted by Noah Stubbs - email

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - The Evansville Whirlpool plant produces a daily newsletter called the Whirlpool Advantage, keeping employees up to date on all the happenings here.  

But union officials say the letter on the front page is a threat to employee's right to assemble.

The clock is ticking at Evansville's Whirlpool plant with just about three months to go before the company will shut down production for good.

Just blocks away at the Local 808 Union Hall, where walls are adorned with the stars and stripes and buy American signs, Whirlpool workers along with leaders from the AFL-CIO work the phone lines.

"We've been spreading the word, that's what it's all about," IUE-CWA representative Gary Gardner said.

They're trying to get more people to come out and join what they hope will be a massive rally in front of the Whirlpool plant on Friday.

It's a rally that will be attended by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and one that union members hope will send a strong message to Whirlpool.

"That what they're doing is wrong and we want to ask them to do the right thing," Gardner said. "The right thing is to reverse this decision, keep this plant here, keep these folks in this country working."

In the advantage, a daily newsletter produced by the Evansville Whirlpool Plant, management addressed the planned rally saying:

We have reminded the Local 808 leadership that the decision to close is final and is not under further consideration.

"If you don't try you don't accomplish anything," Gardner said. "We are full on, full court press to reverse this decision."

The newsletter goes on to say:

"We have shared our concern with Local 808 leaders that these negative activities will only hamper employees when they look for future jobs. We fear that potential employers will view the actions of a few and determine whether they would want to hire any of Evansville division employees in the future."

"It's un-American to tell people they can't assemble or that they shouldn't assemble or to threaten them should they assemble," Gardner said. "If they really cared about whether or not employees were working, then they shouldn't close this plant. They should keep the people working here."

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