Billionaire Icahn Will Choose Fines over Healthcare for Steelworkers Locked-Out by PSC Metals
CANTON, Ohio, June 24, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United Steelworkers (USW) today criticized the management of PSC Metals, a subsidiary of Icahn Enterprises (NASDAQ: IEP), for multi-billionaire owner Carl Icahn's refusal to negotiate a fair contract with the union or comply with the employer mandate provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
PSC Metals locked out more than 60 members of USW Local 3610-02 on Feb. 1, 2014, in an attempt to force workers to accept deep economic concessions, including the elimination of all employee medical insurance benefits. Under the ACA, employers that do not provide health insurance will be subject to a fine of $2,000 per worker starting in 2015.
"The ACA was never intended to be used by employers as an excuse to deprive workers of insurance," said USW District 1 Director David McCall, "yet Carl Icahn would rather pay the fine than negotiate a contract in Canton that includes fair pay and benefits."
McCall called Icahn's scheme to force PSC Metals employees into looking for subsidized benefits on the healthcare exchange an unnecessary burden on taxpayers and said that the union filed unlawful bargaining charges with Region 8 of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) over the company's take-it-or-leave-it, predictably unacceptable contract proposals.
"We are determined to negotiate in good faith for a fair collective bargaining agreement with PSC Metals," McCall said, "and we hope the NLRB will help send the message to Icahn and PSC management that even billionaires must obey federal labor laws."
Finally, McCall urged PSC Metals to end its lockout, return the USW members to their jobs and reciprocate the union's good faith while contract negotiations proceed.
The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.
More information, contact:
Bob Andrews (330) 493-7721
Tony Montana (412) 562-2592
SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)