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Breach of Contract between Royal Dutch Shell PLC and United Steelworkers Union Leads to Workers’ Strike

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Published on : Feb 02, 2015

Workers in 9 petrochemical areas in 4 states in the U.S. left their respective jobs, at a time when there was a strike due to breach of contract negotiations between Royal Dutch Shell and the United Steelworkers union. Among those people who were included in the industry’s very first nation level walkout in more than three decades are the employees of s chemical plant of Shell’s and its Texas oil refinery.

Rick Fisher, a company representative expressed that it would be employing an emergency plan to for continuing work in the normal path of businesses. The company is currently aiming towards resuming negotiations as soon as possible for getting its workers back.

Since 21st January, the parties in negotiations have been looking for securing a successor to an agreement of collective-bargaining of three years that expired in the weekend earlier. 

As per sources, Shell is as of now the leader in national oil bargaining discussions. National negotiations mainly focus on creating and developing a pattern and system on benefits, working conditions, and wages. Unit negotiations and local-union focus mostly on local problems and issues facing the particular facility. Oil pipelines, terminals and refineries, and also other petrochemical facilities fall within its ambit. 

Those who are currently unaffected by the strike are continuing their operations under a rolling 24-hour contract extension. Apart from two of Shell’s facilities, the affected ones are the Marathon Petroleum Corp.’s oil refinery in Catlettsburg, and its oil refinery in Texas and cogeneration facility, the Texas LyondellBasell Industries NV plant situated in Houston; and two oil refineries of the Tesoro Corp.’s located in California and the other one in Washington.