More than one hundred workers at Coca-Cola plants in Logan and Charleston have returned to work after going on a days-long strike.
Ken Hall – the president of Teamsters Local 175 – said workers have a list of grievances against the company, including using supervisors doing union members’ work and failing to pay employees for work performed.
Hall said the workers decided they didn’t want to inconvenience the customers who rely on them, and remain optimistic – despite little movement from a company whose gross profit totaled nearly $600 million in the fourth quarter of 2022.
“They company just made another 23% profit in the first quarter,” said Hall. “They’re paying their CEO about $13 million as of last year, which is a significant increase for him. And yet they want to cut West Virginia workers out of their jobs and out of their pay.”
In previously released statements, Coca-Cola Consolidated says it has provided the union a fair and competitive contract offer and remains committed to working with them on an equitable resolution.
Hall added that the local businesses that depend on receiving products from drivers are dismayed at the labor dispute.
“You see customers saying we don’t want any deliveries that don’t come from our drivers,” said Hall. “They are fed up with the behavior protocol.”
Coca-Cola also recently entered into an agreement with the gas station Sheetz to directly ship products from warehouses to Sheetz convenience stores.
Hall said the move bypasses the company’s drivers, who were paid commissions for delivering those products.