- Associated Press - Wednesday, December 2, 2015

KOHLER, Wis. (AP) - The union on strike against the Kohler Co. is circulating a list of members who have crossed the picket line and returned to work.

United Auto Workers Local 833 President Tim Tayloe said the list was distributed at the request of members and that he has encouraged strikers not to retaliate against those who have gone back to work.

“I said, ‘No harm to these people,’ I have to represent everyone fairly,” Tayloe said.

The list also states the 13 on the list are no longer union brothers or sisters and that “a scab is a scab,” Sheboygan Press Media (https://shebpr.es/1XGEyuS) reports.

“Don’t be afraid to point them out,” the list says.

Union members who have crossed the picket line in the two-week-old strike say they can’t afford to stay off the job. Luis Rodriguez said he knows “we deserve more money” and respects those on strike, but said he can’t support his four children and pregnant wife on $200 a week in strike pay. He wasn’t on the union’s list.

Tayloe said the workers haven’t impacted their union status by returning to their jobs, and that he would “represent these people to my fullest” in negotiations.

The strike has idled about 2,000 production employees at the plumbing-ware foundry in the Village of Kohler and a generator plant near Sheboygan. The company makes bath and kitchen fixtures, small engines and generators, and manages resort destinations.

No new bargaining talks have been scheduled. Tayloe said the union and company have exchanged emails that indicate a chance negotiations could resume soon.

The union wants to do away with a two-tiered pay scale that it says unfairly limits new employees to roughly $13 an hour. Kohler has said the contract offered to union workers was fair. Company president and CEO David Kohler has warned that without the two-tiered system, local manufacturing jobs would likely disappear,


Information from: Sheboygan Press Media, https://www.sheboygan-press.com

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