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Showing blog posts tagged with UMWA

Retired Mineworkers Call on Congress to Protect Their Pensions and Health Care

Retired Mineworkers Call on Congress to Protect Their Pensions and Health Care

Last week, 10,000 retired coal miners and their families came to Washington, D.C., to ask Congress to pass legislation that would secure health care for 22,000 and pensions for 120,000 retirees. As the coal industry struggles, some coal companies have been relieved by bankruptcy courts of their obligations to pay health care and pension contributions for retirees. But allowing these benefits to lapse would be not only devastating to the families of the coal miners who worked so hard to keep America out of the dark, it would be the abandonment of a promise made to coal miners in 1947.

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Finally Some Justice in Upper Big Branch Mine Tragedy: Former Massey Energy CEO Blankenship Convicted of Conspiracy

Photo courtesy Rainforest Action Network on Flickr

More than five years after 29 miners were killed in an explosion at the Upper Big Branch mine in Raleigh County, W.Va., justice was finally served as former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship was found criminally guilty for a conspiracy to willfully violate the Mine Safety and Health Act. While the tragedy was the largest loss of life in a mine accident in the United States since 1970, numerous other workers have lost their lives in Massey mines.

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Study Finds Union Mines Safer, More Productive Than Nonunion

UMWA photo

Once again, a study has shown that unionized coal mines are not only safer places to work than nonunion mines, but that union miners produce more coal. The study, by SNL Energy, found that in 2013 unionized mines in northern and central Appalachia produced about 94,091 tons of coal per injury versus 71,110 in nonunion mines, despite research suggesting that unionized miners are more likely to report injuries that have occurred on the job.

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Former Massey Energy CEO Indicted

For those of you who have been following the Massey Energy story, the Mine Workers (UMWA) passed along this news yesterday: U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin announced that a federal grand jury today returned an indictment charging Donald L. Blankenship, former chief executive officer of Massey Energy Co., with four criminal offenses. The indictment charges Blankenship with conspiracy to violate mandatory federal mine safety and health standards, conspiracy to impede federal mine safety officials, making false statements to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and securities fraud.

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Have You Ever Heard of the Ludlow Massacre? You Might Be Shocked When You See What Happened

For you labor history buffs, Upworthy has a special treat. As part of the Workonomics series that examines the importance of collective action and economic policy that lifts working people and shines a light on inequality, labor history now has its own miniseries

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Roberts: Faith and Patriotism Are Union Values

Photo by Berry Craig

This Veterans Day, I’ll be thinking about a conversation I had with Cecil Roberts, president of the Mine Workers (UMWA), when he was in Paducah, Ky., for Labor Day. Roberts, a combat veteran of the Vietnam War, says it’s time for unions to take back two big issues the labor haters have hijacked from our movement: “The Bible and patriotism.”

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