FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SEPTEMBER 27, 2021
UMWA members overwhelmingly ratify contract at Peabody’s Shoal Creek mine in Alabama
[MCCALLA, AL.] Members of the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) Local Union 1948 yesterday ratified a new collective bargaining agreement at the Shoal Creek metallurgical coal mine in Alabama by a 63%-37% margin. The mine, operated by Peabody Energy, has been idled since October 4, 2020.
“I congratulate the membership of Local Union 1948,” UMWA International President Cecil E. Roberts said. “This ratification will pave the way for the reopening of this mine and means several hundred of our members who have been out of work for almost a year will be heading back to work very soon. I also commend the bargaining team who worked very hard to reach this agreement: International Secretary-Treasurer Brian Sanson, International District 20 Vice President Larry Spencer and District 20 Representative James Blankenship.
“This will provide an economic boost not just for our members and their families, but also to the communities where they live,” Roberts said. “And it provides a roadmap to settling the six-month strike at Warrior Met Coal in the same region.
“We now have two similar collective bargaining agreements in the coalfields of Alabama, at the Shoal Creek and Oak Grove mines,” Roberts said. “It’s time for Warrior Met to step up and reach this kind of fair and reasonable agreement with its workers. I remain ready to negotiate with Warrior Met day and night to reach that agreement and get everyone in Alabama back to work.”
The new Shoal Creek agreement includes an hourly wage increase and health care provisions consistent with the UMWA’s national coal agreement. There will also be a $5,000 ratification bonus paid to all union members. The agreement expires December 31, 2024.