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Asarco Strikers Ask Arizona Government to Intervene

January 19, 2020

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

PHOENIX, Ariz.—Striking workers at the Asarco copper-mining company rallied at the Arizona Capitol Jan. 13, calling on Gov. Doug Ducey and state legislators to intervene to protect them. More than 1,700 workers at the company, an Arizona-based subsidiary of the Grupo Mexico conglomerate, have been on strike for three months. Elected officials “have a choice to make,” Teamsters Local 104 secretary-treasurer Karla Schumann said in a statement. “Will they choose to stand with working families in Arizona, with the many veterans that work at Asarco, and with the Arizona communities that depend on the mining industry? Or will they stand with a rogue Mexican oligarch hell-bent on exporting excessive greed, worker abuse, and environmental devastation across the border?” The Teamsters are one of seven unions representing strikers in Arizona and Texas. The walkout began after workers rejected a contract offer that would have frozen their pension plans, more than doubled what they pay for health care, and denied a raise to two-thirds of hourly workers, many of whom have not gotten a pay increase since 2009. Asarco, which has been operating its mines and refineries with strikebreakers, imposed it in December, a move the unions say is illegal. Read more

January 19, 2020

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