Solvay: soda ash workers vote on unionization

Workers at the Solvay Chemical Inc. trona mine and soda ash plant in Sweetwater County, Wyoming have voted to reject unionization.
A union member with the United Steelworkers Local 13214, said the vo…

Workers at the Solvay Chemical Inc. trona mine and soda ash plant in Sweetwater County, Wyoming have voted to reject unionization. A union member with the United Steelworkers Local 13214, said the vote was 173-98 against unionizing. The vote was held on 18 and 19 April 2005 by the National Labor Relations Board to decide if the company would unionize with the United Steelworkers of America. The union required a vote in favor of 50% plus one to negotiate for the bargaining unit. During the vote, workers from the FMC and General Chemical soda ash plants, whose employees are already organized, rallied in front of the Solvay plant to show support for the union effort. The Steelworkers union represents more than 1,000 hourly-paid workers at FMC and General Chemical. Solvay is the sixth-largest employer in Sweetwater County with 392 workers. The Brussels-based company employs more than 30,000 people in 50 countries. Solvay“s Wyoming operation began in 1978 as Tenneco US Soda Ash Inc. It recently expanded its production capacity to about 1.8 million tons per year. Sweetwater County is the world“s second-largest producer of soda ash after China.