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Arconic workers walk the picket line

Arconic workers are saying their jobs are on the line after recent decisions made by the company.

Posted: Mar 24, 2021 6:17 PM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI)—The people outside of Arconic Wednesday afternoon weren't having a picnic they were picketing and organizers said they are fighting for their jobs.

"It's really been hard to swallow," said Arconic employee Spencer Buchanan.

Workers for Arconic stood outside for nearly 10 hours with a message, one they hope to convey to the company.

"They've contracted out work in two major departments and we have people laid off and the impact is not only to our membership but also to the Lafayette community," said Buchanan. 

Spencer Buchanan has worked at Arconic for more than 25 years. He's the president of U-S-W Local 115 which is the labor union that represents many workers at Arconic.

"We have roughly 100 people laid off," said Buchanan. "There could be more reduction."

Buchanan said the company is outsourcing jobs and claims it's to save costs but it's leaving dozens of workers jobless.

"I've never seen anything like what they are doing now," said Scott Wolendowski.

Vice President of U-S-W Local 115 Scott Wolendowski said it seemed to be a gradual move for the company.

"We are on reduced hours," said Wolendowski. "Usually we have overtime on the weekends. Our maintenance department could leave for the weekend Friday and drive by the place and see their outside contractors doing their work and it's just not right."

Among the picketers was retired Arconic employee Duane Lord who after being with the company for 23 years retired last November.

"When they started outsourcing the metal and not pouring it into our department which was the ingot department, I figured the writing was on the wall it was time for me to get out of here cause I couldn't support this anymore," said Lord. 

Organizers say they plan on having more events to get the word out on what they say is happening at Arconic.

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