With only one more day of contract negotiations on the calendar, management for Coca-Cola returned to the bargaining table with Local 727 on Monday admitting they “didn’t know where to begin.”
Cola-Cola management offered no explanation for what they’ve been doing with their time throughout the previous eight bargaining sessions. Instead, when negotiations came to a close on Nov. 23, the company ignored nearly all of the union’s outstanding proposals and distributed an insulting package for wages and benefits. Coca-Cola further wasted time by showing the Bargaining Committee a cookie-cutter corporate PowerPoint presentation.
“Cola-Cola is making it very clear to the union and to their workers that it has no intention of reaching a new agreement,” said John Coli Jr., President of Local 727. “Their behavior throughout negotiations on Monday was standard practice for a corporate bully of this size. They delay bargaining, they make no meaningful movement on non-economic proposals and they offer an insulting economics package. It’s predictable and sad.”
Coca-Cola’s economic offer proposes meager raises of just 30 cents for the first three years of a new contract. Furthermore, Coca-Cola wants to up workers’ health care costs for all job classifications, eradicating wage increases and forcing some workers to effectively stomach a wage cut.
Coca-Cola Refreshments’ corporate parent had revenue of $11.4 billion in the last three months alone.
Midway through bargaining, management asked to show a PowerPoint presentation to breakdown the company’s future goals and financial outlook. Ultimately it offered zero specifics regarding financials.
Rather the presentation overflowed with generic ideas for company growth and meaningless corporate jargon, including Coca-Cola’s desire to improve “leadership in sustainability” and expand its “consumer portfolio” and “market domination.”
Coca-Cola said it wants to offer the best products made by the greatest workforce in America. But when the company presented its economics proposal, management proved they’re unwilling to pay for the labor and dedication they expect from workers.
The final day of negotiations is Nov. 30. Look for updates this week from the union. Contact Aisha Hurston at (847) 696-7500 or [email protected] with questions.