UPDATE: Rotek says workers on strike; union president says they were forced out

by TIM TROGLEN | REPORTER Published:

Aurora — About 120 members of United Steelworkers Local 8565 employed at Rotek Inc. went on strike Friday, according to a company spokeswoman.

“Members of the United Steelworkers Local Union 8565 at the Aurora facility have elected to strike beginning Jan. 18,” according to Rotek’s Kellie Harris. The plant is located at 1400 S. Chillicothe Road. “Product shipments will continue on schedule as the company continues discussions with union representatives.”

However, Bill Hyslop, president of Local 8565, said Friday, “We are not on strike, we were forced out.”

Contract negotiations were declared at an “impasse” by the company and instead of taking a forced concessionary contract which includes a 20 percent to 30 percent pay cut, the membership walked out, Hyslop said.

The contract expired Nov. 1 and the sides have been negotiating since October, he said.

“We offered to continue negotiating under the current contract and take a [salary] freeze,” he said.

The company is not planning to bring in “new labor” to meet “commitments to our customers,” Harris said.

“We are disappointed that approximately 120 members of the United Steelworkers Local Union 8565 have elected to conduct a strike,” Harris said.

For more, see Wednesday's Aurora Advocate.

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  • After having clear experience how Rotek works, they have eliminated experience to waste money in the past. When things are going good they generate issues to create distension, and now with a new master. He wishes to flex a muscle and make a name for himself. When is enough ever going to be enough for corporate Management? I promise you that none of the people in ranking positions suffer any losses to share the load of profit margin with the employees they expect to cover this change they deem necessary. It is sad that we have reversed direction so much that no where in government does the burden of living within a means matter while these types of jobs wither and dye. Mr Rotek Manager, who will do the work and make a fair living at it soon? Certainly not you.