National Labor Relations Act prohibits threats to union members
BATH, Maine – General Dynamics Bath Iron Works Bath Iron Works (BIW) today filed a charge with the National Labor Relations Board against the IAM Local S6 union for violating the National Labor Relations Act by threatening union members who elect to return to work.
In a communication to its membership, union leaders threatened so-called “scabs” who cross the picket line with heavy fines and loss of benefits. They also suggested physical violence, saying, “no man has a right to scab so long as there is a pool of water to drown his carcass in, or a rope long enough to hang his body with.”
“We are extremely disappointed that union leaders would make false and threatening statements to the very employees they are supposed to represent,” said BIW President Dirk Lesko. “We take these issues very seriously and will continue to ensure our employees’ rights are protected.”
Under the National Labor Relations Act, employees who choose to resume working have the legal right to do so without being harassed or threatened with violence. Those who resign their union membership prior to crossing the picket line cannot be fined or required to pay full union dues, either during or after the strike.
The Local S6 has been on strike since June 21 after it rejected BIW’s offer that included 3% pay increases for each year of the 3-year contract.