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BP protest... Labor Beat video shows Refinery Strikers Protest at Chicago BP Headquarters...

A new video is now available from Labor Beat On YouTube at: http://youtu.be/uGZCZ8XV_xo providing the public with information about the strike of refinery workers at the BP Whiting refinery. The video, less than ten minutes in length, will help people understand other aspects of the labor struggles today. It is also available, archived at: laborbeat.org.

BP workers protesting in Chicago at the corporation's Chicago office. Labor Beat photo.On March 19, 2015 a big contingent of striking BP refinery workers from Whiting, IN put on a protest rally in front of the multi-billion dollar corporation's Chicago headquarters in the Chicago Mercantile Exchange building. They were from USW Local 7-1, which includes about 1,100 members. They were joined by members from they Chicago Teachers Union.

Although the USW had settled a national contract with BP during this current strike, the contract for Local 7-1 still had not been finalized. Bob Lofton, USW International Field Rep., explained that the Whiting refinery workers have been on strike since Feb. 8. "There's two levels of bargaining, one at the national, one at the local. The national package settlement was reached, and that included the terms of the agreement and wages. That has yet to be put on the table at the various locations that will still go forward, but local issues in Whiting prevent us from getting an agreement even though the national package has been tentatively reached and settled at other locations."

Ebony Parker, USW 7-1 member from the Whiting refinery, pointed out that "it's not about the money. It's about safety. We're not working safely and we're tired and we can't get the proper rest. Six hours between a shift is not sufficient enough rest. People need to understand we're not making Legos. We're dealing with some of the most dangerous chemicals, the most flammable chemicals that you can even deal with...The danger in it is it affects not just the communities that the refinery sits in -- in Hammond, Whiting and Chicago -- but it affects the people that travel through."

Also interviewed on the picket line in Whiting is USW 7-1 member Ralph Ford. Length - 6:18

Produced by Labor Beat. Labor Beat is a CAN TV Community Partner. Labor Beat is a non-profit 501(c)(3) member of IBEW 1220. Views are those of the producer Labor Beat. For info: mail@laborbeat.org , www.laborbeat.org . 312-226-3330. For other Labor Beat videos, visit YouTube and search "Labor Beat".

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