Workers at a Mott’s plant in Williamstown, N.Y., have been
on strike for nearly a month and a half over stalled contract negotiations.
Mott’s parent corporation, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, stopped negotiating with
the workers in late May, imposing lower wages, higher health care contributions
and attacking pensions.
These cuts come in the face of DPS’s record profits in 2009
of $555 million. Executives have more than doubled their earnings.
On May 23, over 300 members of Local 220, Retail, Wholesale
and Department Store Workers Union took to the streets. “I think what they
[Mott’s owners] thought was we’d be weakened,” said Rusty Burtch, a Mott’s
forklift mechanic. “More or less they woke up a sleeping giant. This made us
Workers held rallies outside the plant, and plan to leaflet
and protest stores around the country. Pickets have also been organized in
Winchester, Va., against a non-union food plant that has accepted outsourcing
work from Mott’s due to the strike.