American Crystal Union Rejects Contract - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

American Crystal Union Rejects Contract

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Updated 8:15 PM

     American Crystal union workers will not go back to work this Monday. Union workers up and down the Valley voted today for a fourth time whether to accept the company's original contract that was offered in July 2011. A simple majority was need to accept the contract. It was rejected with a 55% majority, the closest vote so far. Union leaders say they did not tell members how to vote.
 Union president John Riskey gave this statement:

"By now it should be clear that Dave Berg & Crystal Sugar's management team has no interest in ending a fiscally irresponsible lockout that has been disastrous to farmer shareholders, put the federal sugar program in jeopardy, and hurt countless families in the Red River Valley."

After a year and a half of being locked out, 500 of the 13,000 members have resigned or retired.



We have a developing story for you now, in just a few hours we'll know whether the locked out American Crystal union workers will go back to work on Monday.

They've been locked out for 17 months,  and this is their 4th vote on a contract that has not changed since the company's original offer made last summer. The union originally had 13-hundred members, but 500 have since left.

Locked out workers have been picketing and boycotting the Crystal Sugar products. Union workers say they dedicated many years to the company to help make them profitable, and to be locked out was a big hit.

Union worker Ross Perrin says, "We'll see where the people lead us to go, if they want to accept the contract then we'll go back to the factory and start making money for the company like when we did when we were locked out, ah we'll see where it goes."

The votes will be counted tonight around 8pm and we will have the results at 10pm.

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