U.S. Steel moves about 100 non-union workers from the Hamilton plant
About 100 non-union staff were moved from the U.S. Steel Hamilton plant while union workers protested at the gate this morning.
The staff has been inside the plant for two weeks, keeping the coke ovens operating, according to thespec.com.
There was a small and peaceful union protest, where locked-out workers, retirees, and supporters blocked the gate and circled the buses.
The staff has been keeping the coke battery operating as "turning it off could result in damage costing hundreds of millions of dollars."
U.S. Steel has to give picketers 24-hour notice about moving things in/out of the plant, and supposedly there are up to 250 people in the plant.The union has allowed the workers inside to have food trucks to enter; so, the workers have bedding, food, and televisions to watch. Although, the union has no formal contact with the locked in staff.
The workers are producing small amounts of coke, but nothing has been shipped out of the plant yet.
The article said that a "spokesperson for the provincial Ministry of the Environment also said yesterday the U.S. Steel situation is being monitored to ensure nothing escapes from the plant.
In an e-mail, Jennifer Hall said the company contacted the Ministry before the shut down to say it would continue to operate the coke facilities and filed contingency plans to ensure it continues to meet all the requirements of its certificate of approval.
Under Ontario’s environmental legislation, the company is required to report any discharges to the ministry, and Environmental Officers will followup as needed.
There have been no reports of discharges,” she wrote. “We have met with the company to discuss its plans for operations and its strategy for idling and restart of the Hamilton plant that will ensure minimal environmental impacts. The strategy also includes ongoing monitoring and reporting requirements.”