Sunday, December 7, 2008

Laid-Off Workers Occupy Chicago Factory

CHICAGO, Dec. 6 -- Workers laid off from their jobs at a factory have occupied the building and are demanding assurances they'll get severance and vacation pay that they say they are owed.
About 250 employees of Republic Windows and Doors began their sit-in Friday, the last scheduled day of the plant's operation.
Leah Fried, an organizer with the United Electrical Workers, said the Chicago-based vinyl window manufacturer failed to give 60 days' notice required by law before shutting down.
Workers also were angered when company officials didn't show up for a meeting Friday that had been arranged by Rep Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Ill.), she said.
During the peaceful takeover, workers have been shoveling snow and cleaning the building, Fried said.
"We're doing something we haven't since the 1930s, so we're trying to make it work," Fried said.

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