UMWA reaches tentative collective bargaining agreement with Murray Energy

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CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – The United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) announced on Thursday that it has reached a tentative agreement on a new contract with the bankrupt Murray Energy, according to a press release.

The release stated that if ratified, the anticipated new owners of the company have agreed to recognize the terms and conditions of the tentative agreement.

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UMWA President Cecil Roberts

“This tentative agreement comes at a difficult time not just for the coal industry but for our nation and our planet,” UMWA International President Cecil E. Roberts said. “Mines are either idled or only producing a limited amount of coal. Too many of our members are either laid off or not working full time. The coronavirus and the growing recession is dramatically reducing energy consumption and the demand for coal.”

“That will hopefully change as the weather heats up,” Roberts said. “But the bankruptcy clock is still ticking, and we are very close to the time when the Court will order ownership of this company to change hands. It is critical for our members that there be an agreement in place when that happens.”

The release said that details of the tentative agreement will not be released until after the UMWA members working at Murray Energy have an opportunity to review its terms and conditions and hold a ratification vote.

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak and the resulting social distancing orders in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania it is not possible to hold traditional contract explanation meetings, according to the release. UMWA members will be informed of the details of this tentative agreement via electronic media and mail, the release stated.

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