The National Labor Relations Board again ordered OK Foods to set aside the May 1 union election for maintenance and refrigeration workers.
The Board found that OK Foods Inc. “engaged in objectionable conduct” under the National Labor Relations Act, specifically making false promises to employees regarding pay increases in exchange for defeating the union.
OK Foods did not agree with the decision.
“Despite the fact that the National Labor and Relations Board’s hearing officer overruled all of the specific objections made against OK Foods by the union, and even held that the company didn’t threaten, coerce or intimidate anyone, the officer still believed a new election is warranted,” said Trent Goins, president and CEO of OK Foods, Inc. in a statement. “Only when you are up against a labor union board can a company win all the objections yet still have to have another election simply because the outcome didn’t go the union’s way.
“While we are disappointed with the subjective decision by the National Labor and Relations Board’s hearing officer, we will continue to stand with and support our maintenance and refrigeration employees in Heavener, Oklahoma, who voted against the union and against organizing this past May. While this decision is a setback for our employees, we fully expect them to once again unite and vote against the union.”
In an email, the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1000 strongly endorsed the Board’s call for a new union election because OK Foods engaged in objectionable conduct, which prevented workers from having a free and fair union election on May 1, 2014.
“I’m pleased the Board did the right thing for these workers,” said UFCW Local 1000 President Ricky Burris. “The Board ruled definitively that OK Foods interfered with these employees’ free choice in organizing a union. Why is this company so scared of its workers having a fair vote without lies and coercion? I want to see a re-vote scheduled as soon as possible.”
UFCW Local 1000 has been organizing with OK Foods workers since December of 2013. The workers approached UFCW with complaints of low wages, expensive healthcare benefits, and unfair and unequal treatment at OK Foods chicken processing plant in Heavener. OK Foods is a subsidiary of Mexican-based poultry consortium Industrias Bachoco.
UFCW Local 1000 represents almost 10,000 workers across Oklahoma and North Texas including people who work at grocery stores, food production facilities, barber shops, and other commercial enterprises. UFCW Local 1000 is an affiliate of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, which represents 250,000 poultry production workers across the United States and Canada.
Read the NLRB decision here detailing OK Foods objectionable conduct here: http://bit.ly/1uLflVV.