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Union at Exxon Beaumont, Texas, refinery faces removing vote

HOUSTON, Oct 6 (Reuters) – Members of the union representing locked-out employees at Exxon Mobil Corp’s (XOM.N) Beaumont, Texas, refinery have submitted a petition to power a vote on eradicating the union, the union and firm mentioned on Wednesday.

Exxon and the native United Steelworkers union mentioned they had been notified by the U.S. National Labor Relations Board, which is able to oversee the vote, {that a} petition calling for removing had been filed. It was unclear when the vote would happen.

The union represents 650 employees who’ve been locked out of their jobs since May 1, following failure to achieve a brand new contract after the earlier one expired in February.

“You’ve got people that have been locked out for six months, it’s getting pretty tough,” Bryan Gross, USW worldwide consultant, mentioned.

“The company respects employee choice and believes in the value of a direct relationship between the company and employees, without a third party union,” Exxon mentioned in a message to Beaumont workers, as confirmed by an Exxon spokesperson.

The USW in April filed a criticism with the NLRB alleging Exxon had violated federal legislation by offering an worker with decertification supplies, worker e mail addresses and use of an organization laptop and e mail system to marketing campaign for decertification.

Exxon mentioned it started the lockout to keep away from the disruption of a potential strike. The USW mentioned the corporate’s contract proposal would wipe out seniority and create separate contracts for the employees on the refinery and the adjoining lubricant oil plant.

Reporting by Erwin Seba
Editing by Chris Reese and Cynthia Osterman

United Steelworkers union members picket outside the Exxon Mobil Beaumont, after being locked out of the plant by the company, in Beaumont, Texas, U.S., May 1, 2021.  REUTERS/Erwin Seba/File Photo