May 13, 2017
By Stephanie West
Patchogue, NY – On Saturday May 6th, Striking beer delivery drivers on Long Island rallied outside Blue Point Brewery, calling on the brewers’ distributor to end labor abuses. Clare Rose, whose workers are on strike over wage and pension cuts, is the sole distributor of Blue Point products on Long Island.
“Clare Rose cannot hide from its workers,” said Teamsters Local 812 President Ed Weber. “We are going to go straight to Clare Rose’s customers to tell them about wage cuts and mass firings. And we expect Clare Rose’s business partners to hold Clare Rose accountable.”
Workers at Clare Rose have been on strike since April 23rd, when the company unilaterally cut drivers’ wages by 30% and ended the pension. The company mailed letters to workers informing them that they had been permanently replaced and giving them instructions to end their membership in the union.
The Saturday rally coincided with Blue Point’s “Big Brew Day at the Boatyard” party. Union members urged Long Islanders to boycott Clare Rose products. Protesters handed out leaflets and held banners reading “Clare Rose Hurts Long Island Families.”
The union negotiated with Clare Rose for months without progress before the highly-profitable company imposed huge wage and benefits cuts. The union said the strike against the company’s illegal actions will last until Clare Rose executives withdraw their draconian demands and agree to a fair contract with workers.