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Alex Perkins

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Staff Representative for the United Steelworkers Alex Perkins, joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss the ongoing first contract negotiations with Kumho Tires and the events that have taken place during the six-year organizing effort. 

Employees at Kumho Tire have been fighting for their right to organize for 6 years. In 2017, Perkins began to speak with those interested in forming a union at the plant. With his organizing efforts, they were able to get nearly 85 percent of the employees to sign a union card. However, at the same time, Kumho Tire began to combat the union drive by holding multiple mandatory daily captive audience meetings and threatened employees with the loss of jobs or potentially the entire plant closing.

Due to these union-busting activities by Kumho Tire, the first election lost by 16 votes. However, the National Labor Relations Board found Kumho Tires guilty of 31 violations, allowing Perkins to renew his organizing efforts in the plant. In 2020, the second election was certified by the NLRB, however after three years of negotiations, the two sides have yet to agree on a first contract.

There are many difficulties in organizing in the South. With only 4.4 percent union density in Georgia, many workers are not well educated on unions and their many benefits and protections. Despite the difficulties, Perkins added that he still fights to educate these workers and hopes to one day have them become a part of the union.

Listen to the entire episode to learn more.


America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors: AFL-CIO, American Federation of Government Employees, American Federation of Musicians Local 4, American Alliance for Manufacturing, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Communication Workers of America, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 50, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Crafts, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 6, Ironworkers Great Lakes District Council, The Labor Citizen newspaper, Laborers International Union of The National Labor Office of Blue Cross and Blue Shield, North America, North Coast Area Labor Federation, Ohio Federation of Teachers, Survey and Ballot Systems, United Labor Agency, United Steelworkers.


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