Heaven Hill Distillery jobs have been great for Kentucky – great for the communities that enjoy their quality products and the tourism dollars they bring in, and great for families with generations of Kentucky distillery workers building better lives through good pay and benefits. They have also been great for the company with Heaven Hill making $500 million in estimated revenue last year.
But instead of giving workers a contract that honors their hard work, Heaven Hill proposed a contract that makes cuts to overtime – cuts that could drastically reduce take-home pay – and threatens to divide its workers with unclear and potentially unfair scheduling.
What Heaven Hill is doing threatens not only its workers and their livelihoods but can lead to turnover and loss of generational skills that local communities and economies rely on.
That’s why workers are standing up –to keep Heaven Hill, and all distillery jobs, GOOD jobs.
Support Heaven Hill Workers Today
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MAKE THE PLEDGE: Tweet Heaven Hill that you won’t buy their products until a FAIR contract is signed.
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On August 27, over 140 workers at two INEOS Pigments plants in Ashtabula, Ohio, joined the ICWUC/UFCW and International Brotherhood of Teamsters. INEOS is a global chemical company, and INEOS Pigments is one of the largest producers of titanium dioxide in North America.
This organizing victory is the result of a five-year effort to organize workers at INEOS Pigments. The company refused to recognize the ICWUC/UFCW or the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and its efforts were supported by the previous administration’s National Labor Relations Board. INEOS Pigments also hired union busting lawyers to hold captive audience meetings at the plants. Despite these obstacles and intimidation tactics, these workers persevered and unionized because they wanted a voice in the workplace and the same benefits as some of their unionized colleagues, who are represented by the United Steelworkers.
“In spite of the company’s anti-union tactics, these workers stood together for a better life,” said ICWUC/UFCW President Lance Heasley. “We look forward to working with the Teamsters and having the support of the Steelworkers as we begin to negotiate a strong, first contract for these workers.”
Then Organizer Lance Heasley filed a RC Petition with the NLRB on December 23, 2020, for all Maintenance, Shipping/Receiving, Production, and Lab employees at the Sun Chemical Kankakee, IL location. Sun Chemical tried every tactic in the book (resulting in us filing 2 separate petitions and have 2 separate elections) to delay things but the workers at Sun Chemical stayed strong and on August 9, 2021, they received NLRB certification for all of them together in one bargaining unit and to be represented by ICWUC Local 498C! The ICWUC solutes the workers from Sun Chemical for sticking together through this lengthy process!
On Feb. 19, 100 workers at Veolia Environmental Services in Sauget, Ill., voted to join the ICWUC.
Terry Ball a 31-year veteran of Veolia wrote
“On behalf of the employees of Veolia Sauget. I would like to thank Lance, Rob, and Ricky (Lance Heasley, Robert Craft & Ricky Lawrence) from ICWUC. From the first time we met with them. We felt as though we were part of the brotherhood in the Union. They displayed professionalism. Treated us with respect. Listening to our concerns. Answering the tough questions with honesty. Those are just a few examples of what earned our trust in the Union.
We tried to organize back in 1998. Things didn’t go so well. We lost by 10 votes. In my opinion it was because we lacked the professionalism that was displayed by the Union leadership at that time. Lots of alcohol was provided prior to meetings. Not a good idea. That did not happen this time around. It was all business. Which is what I will attribute to a slam dunk victory. 90-7 YES VOTES. UNION YES!!!
Thanks again, Lance, Rob, Ricky”
The workers are seeking better wages, benefits and a safer workplace.
Lead Organizer Lance Heasley said,
“It is always a joy to see workers come together. Seeing them realize that they are STRONGER TOGETHER and that they have more in common, than they have different, is a credit to the organizing committee. Getting 93% of the workforce to stand together and show their SOLIDARITY is amazing! That just proves that the LABOR MOVEMENT is still alive despite Corporate America’s war on labor.”
Veolia Environmental Services is a division of Veolia Environment, a French transnational company that has operations in 35 countries and specializes in the management, treatment and disposal of waste.
The ICWUC represented workers of Delta Oil Mill in Jonestown, MS until its bankruptcy and closing approximately 5 years ago. The facility reopened approximately 2 years ago under the name Cotton Seed Co-Op.
Cotton Seed Co-Op rehired many of the previous employees from Delta Oil Mill. When the workers came back to work without a union contract, they found that many of the benefits and protections they once had when members of the ICWUC were now gone. They knew they wanted more so they reached out to their former Representative and Regional Director Ricky Lawrence in early May.
Ricky sent them cards to sign to see how much interest there was at the facility and in a couple of weeks they had mailed him back signed cards for approximately 80% of the current employees. Organizer Ernest Perkins was sent in to visit with the workers and be sure they were strong.
After meeting with the worker’s, he contacted Organizer Lance Heasley to come assist in the NLRB petition process. During the petition process the Organizing team gave the company the option of having a neutral third party count the cards rather than go through with the NLRB election process. The company agreed to have a neutral third party count the cards. On June 25 the neutral party did the count. He determined that 47 of the 57 employees had signed cards.
The company then voluntarily recognized the ICWUC as the bargaining agent for the Cotton Seed Co-Op employees and agreed on a date to begin negotiating a contract. The ICWUC is proud to have these workers back and look forward to working with them in negotiating their first contract!
Check back often, our page is continuously updated with news, information, and upcoming events.
Our organizers are here to help you start a campaign at your place of employment. Let us help you achieve better working conditions, job security and higher wages.
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Peroxychem workers in Saratoga Springs, NY voted unanimously to join the ICWUC on December 13, 2018!
Representative Andy Kokiko and Organizer Lance Heasley were instrumental during this process by speaking with the workers, petitioning for the workers and organizing the workers. This is the third unanimous election Lance has been involved in.
Congratulations to the workers of Peroxychem! The ICWUC looks forward to working with you to achieve your first contract!
Early in August the workers at Kinder Morgan Company in Cincinnati, Ohio contacted President Cyphers about joining our union. These workers load and unload hazardous chemicals from river barges and after a couple of meetings with these workers (and some assistance from Lance Heasley) President Cyphers filed their petition. On September 7 the workers won their election and will become members of Local 664c. We welcome the Kinder Morgan workers to the ICWUC and we KNOW they will be glad they joined up with us!
Pictured below Organizer Lance Heasley presents a check to James Woody, Vice-President of Local 252c, for finding the lead that resulted in organizing new members at Consolidated Nuclear Securities in Oak Ridge, TN. James found the lead, turned it over to the ICWUC, and once the unit won their election, won a check for $500.00. It’s that easy for anyone to win! Just provide us with the lead and we do the rest. Then once an election is won, we pay out for the person who provided us with that lead.
Congratulations to James for his finding the lead, and congratulations to Local 252c in gaining new potential members! Way to go!