Rollex Corp. Acts in Bad Faith, Disrespects Local 727 Members by Storming Out of Negotiations

| October 30, 2018

CHICAGO, October 30, 2018 — Teamsters Local 727 maintained its demand for fair wages and the respectful treatment of its members as the Union bargaining committee and the metal siding and home product manufacturer Rollex Corporation reconvened negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement yesterday, October 29th.

After Rollex management arrived to negotiations forty-five minutes late, Local 727 attempted to jumpstart bargaining by responding to the Company’s last contract proposals. Local 727’s responses held firm on issues of great importance to workers—such as benefits, layoffs, and workplace safety—and included new proposals for a $15 minimum wage and the elimination of maximum wage rates.

Rollex failed to return to the bargaining table for three hours. After the unwarranted delay, the Company offered almost no movement on its initial proposals and continued to push for a two-year wage freeze. In fact, the only movement the Company indicated it was prepared to make was to raise lump sum payments to employees from $350 to $700. Additionally, Rollex attempted to negotiate an interpretation of contract language related to employer healthcare contributions which would change the classification of laid off workers to part-time employees. Essentially, management attempted to fund their proposed lump sum “increases” by cutting corners on precious healthcare coverage costs.

The Local 727 bargaining committee attempted to respond to the Company’s proposals but were cut off by lead Rollex negotiator Kenneth Sparks’ unprofessional hurling of swears at the committee. Sparks and Rollex management refused to listen, negotiate or conduct themselves in good faith, and abruptly left negotiations when Local 727 Secretary-Treasurer John Coli, Jr. stood up in defense of the Union.

Rollex stormed out of negotiations with Local 727’s proposals in-hand. As such, the Union has contacted Rollex to remind management that Local 727 awaits a good faith response from them.

“Rollex’s disrespectful and bad faith behavior during negotiations is appalling. Not only is the Company’s undervaluing of their dedicated workforce an insult to our members, but the conduct of their lead negotiator is unprofessional and unproductive—we will not tolerate such bad faith,” stated Secretary-Treasurer Coli.

Throughout negotiations Rollex management also refused to provide Local 727 with all requested information related to the Company’s multiple safety violation citations from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration or requested documentation of the remedies implemented following these citations. Rollex made the implausible claim that they had no documents related to these matters.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor website, OSHA inspectors ordered Rollex to correct eleven safety violations, including multiple serious violations which placed workers at risk for serious cuts and amputation, and pay as much as $141,340 in fines between October 2014 and February 2016.

“The Company’s claim it has no records regarding these serious violations is absurd and suggests it is hiding information and is unconcerned with the safety of its employees,” added Coli. “I wonder if that attitude would change if Management were risking their limbs and lives each and every day on the job.”

Rollex’s abrupt departure from negotiations came just over twenty-four hours after Local 727 members employed by the Company overwhelmingly voted to authorize the Union bargaining committee to initiate an unfair labor practice strike against the Company.

“If the Union receives no response or sees no good faith movement from Rollex, we are prepared to initiate an Unfair Labor Practice Strike against the Company on Monday, November 5th,” confirmed Coli.

Teamsters Local 727 has filed Unfair Labor Practice charges with Region 13 of the National Labor Relations Board as a result of Rollex’s bad faith bargaining and failure to provide information. All charges are currently pending.

Teamsters Local 727 represents nearly 10,000 hardworking men and women throughout the Chicago area, including more than 70 workers employed by Rollex Corporation at the Company’s Elk Grove Village, Ill. warehouse.

Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.

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CONTACT: Melissa Senatore, (847) 696-7500


Category: ROLLEX

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