(PROVIDENCE, R.I.) – The 140 production, shipping and receiving, maintenance and quality assurance workers at Rogers Corporation in Narragansett, Rhode Island voted overwhelmingly on Thursday, September 12 to join Teamsters Local 251. The National Labor Relations Board certified the election on September 20.
The campaign began after Rogers Corp. purchased the facility over two years ago. Workers feared for their job security after watching the company fire management personnel, as well as some of their fellow coworkers. The workers saw that the success of Rogers Corp. didn't trickle down to them, as they toiled for low wages and unaffordable health care. From the first call to the election, the campaign was just over two months.
“Local 251 is proud that these workers understood the power that can be built by being Teamsters,” said Matt Taibi, Local 251 Secretary-Treasurer. “The election is the first step; now it’s time to begin working for their first contract.”
Management did not run an anti-union campaign to encourage a “No” vote. This is highly unusual in this age of intense corporate resistance to workers organizing into unions.
“We see union-busting campaigns almost every time workers begin the process of organizing for power in the workplace,” said Michael Simone, Trustee and Organizer for Local 251. “The overwhelming vote of 100 ‘Yes’ to 27 ‘No’ shows that when the company lets workers decide without intimidation or threats, workers vote ‘Yes’!”
Local 251’s newest members manufacture and distribute industrial adhesives. Rogers Corp. is a global leader in manufacturing.
“Teamsters Local 251 has experience dealing with manufacturing employers,” Taibi said. “We know there are global challenges, but we also know that Rogers is highly profitable. The workers who are the engine of success deserve their fair share for themselves and their families.”