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USA: Republic Services workers to strike over failed contract negotiations, as workers criticise low wages & poor safety investment, amid increased company profits & tax cuts

Author: Michael Sainato, The Guardian, Published on: 23 October 2019

"Striking sanitation workers decry low pay as company makes millions for Bill Gates", 17 October 2019

Workers for Republic Services...are going on strike amid new union contract negotiations with workers in 10 cities around the country.

The company’s largest single shareholder is...Bill Gates, whose...firm Cascade Holdings owns nearly 34% of the company’s stocks...Gates’ investment has become a focus for strikers’ complaints.

In 2018, Republic Services made a profit of $2.81bn and estimated a savings of $190m from Trump’s tax cut bill...

 ...Low wages are a key issue...“Workers see the inequality with the Trump tax cuts...Yet Republic Services were making very little investment in equipment and safety and no investment at all in the workers...” said Chuck Stiles, vice-president of Teamsters Local 728 and the assistant director of the Solid Waste division...

...sanitation workers...in Marshfield, Massachusetts, have been on strike since 29 August after negotiations with the company failed to produce a contract...The strike has continued as recent negotiations resulted in Republic Services standing firm on their initial proposal...

 ...A spokesperson for the Gates Foundation said the trust does not comment on its investment holdings and decisions.

“When Republic did not agree to the Teamsters’ unrealistic bargaining demands, the union called a strike,” a Republic Services spokesperson wrote...Republic Services also claimed workers already receive “outstanding compensation and benefit packages”...

Read the full post here

Related companies: Republic Services