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August 08, 2008

Tyson Food Gives In

[By David M]

Labor Day Reinstated as Paid Holiday at Shelbyville, TN, Plant; Tyson Foods Requested Change from Union

Springdale, Arkansas – August 8, 2008 - Tyson Foods, Inc. announced today it has reached a new agreement with the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU), an American union, reinstating Labor Day as one of the designated paid
holidays under the contract for covered employees in the Shelbyville, Tennessee, plant.

Tyson made this request on behalf of its Shelbyville plant employees, some of whom had expressed concern about the new contract provisions relative to paid holidays. In an effort to be responsive, Tyson asked the union to reopen the contract to address the holiday issue, and the union agreed to do so. The union membership voted overwhelmingly Thursday to reinstate Labor Day as one of the plant’s paid holidays, while keeping Eid al-Fitr as an additional paid holiday for this year only. This means that in 2008 only, Shelbyville employees will have nine paid holidays.

For the remainder of the five-year contract period, the eight paid holidays will include: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and a Personal Holiday, which could either be the employee’s birthday, Eid al-Fitr or another day requested and approved by their supervisor.

This issue concerns only the plant at Shelbyville, Tennessee. Labor Day has always been celebrated, and continues to be, at the other 118 Tyson plants across the country.

The Shelbyville complex employs approximately 1,200 people. Approximately 1,000 workers are covered by the RWDSU union agreement at that location.

CJ of A Soldier's Perspective writes of this development:

Do I feel bad at having some part in bringing this to my readers' attention and pressuring the company to change its policy? Not in the least. Especially since not one of my three emails to various other questions were answered.

[...]

Americans, real Americans, celebrate Veteran's Day on November 11th of each year, just two days after the approximate start of Eid ul-Adha. One can't help but wonder if Tyson Foods has a plan in place to (or if the union's are already working towards it) to replace Veteran's Day with the Muslim holiday. After all, with the majority of Tyson Foods Muslims coming from Somalia, what stake do they have in a holiday meant to celebrate our nation's veterans? It would be no skin off their leather bound Korans to replace another meaningless American holiday with something they REALLY care about!

This is where multiculturalism goes awry. A nation cannot exist and continue to honor its traditions if we continue to allow outsiders to dictate what those traditions are. I can't imagine Canada giving up Canada Day on July 1st because a bunch of American emigrants found it offensive and would rather celebrate the 4th of July! Isn't it bad enough that the completely non-American holiday, Cinco de Mayo has somehow crept into becoming an official US holiday? What do we care about the victory of Mexican forces led over French forces in the tiny battle of Puebla? Cinco de Mayo is celebrated more in THIS country than it is in Mexico where it is only a regional holiday in the state of Puebla!!

Read it all...

Keep up the pressure CJ, it seems that no one else is.





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