Hawaiian Electric Co. used managers and outside contractors to repair storm-damaged power lines yesterday after its unionized work force walked off the job over a contract dispute.
HECO executives said the strike would slow efforts to restore service to about 8,000 Oahu homes and businesses, mostly in the Ewa Beach area, that were without power last night.
"We do have management crews out there to see what we can do about the Ewa Beach situation in particular this evening, and we will do our best to restore as much of that service as possible," said Robbie Alm, HECO executive vice president. "I don't want to guarantee that, obviously, we don't have our normal full crews out there."
About 1,300 HECO workers who are members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1260 went on strike at 3:30 p.m. yesterday and began walking picket lines on Oahu, the Big Island and in Maui County.
The workers rejected last month a tentative contract agreement reached between union leaders and management, setting the stage for the strike.
HECO workers said the two sides disagreed on a management proposal to raise the age of retirement with full benefits to 62 from 60; a proposed reduction in sick leave benefits; and a plan to create a two-tier contract with new hires receiving lower wages and benefits. There also was a dispute over whether negotiated wage increases should begin with ratification of a new contract or expiration of the previous contract last October. Neither company nor union officials would confirm the sticking points in the contract talks.
That's what happens when people go on strike. Strikes aren't supposed to be easy for anyone. Strikes often highlight the important contribution that the workers make to keep life running smoothly for the masses.
This organization, as an aside, has never had a strike before.
Answer by adnilm at 10:50 AM on Mar. 7, 2011
Answer by itsmesteph11 at 11:02 AM on Mar. 7, 2011
Answer by lovinangels at 11:39 AM on Mar. 7, 2011
Answer by lovinangels at 1:48 PM on Mar. 7, 2011
Answer by wildflowers25 at 4:48 PM on Mar. 7, 2011
Answer by LoriKeet at 4:48 PM on Mar. 7, 2011
Answer by foreverb3 at 6:18 PM on Mar. 7, 2011
Unions don't give a crap about the safety of the people.
Answer by Natesmom507 at 11:18 PM on Mar. 7, 2011