Metro-East News

Plumbers and Pipefitters avert strike, Teamsters end strike

Workers from two metro-east-area unions have reached tentative agreements with their respective bargaining units after one had been on strike and the other had threatened a work stoppage.

About 80 members of the Teamsters Union Local 50 in Swansea are back to work after walking the picket line for just more than a week. The union confirmed a tentative agreement was reached July 24 after the union had gone on strike July 16. The union’s brief strike halted the delivery of ready-mix concrete throughout the metro-east for seven working days.

In Belleville, the Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 101 reached a tentative settlement Tuesday after the union had threatened to picket. Gary Vasquez, of Great Southwestern Illinois Association bargaining unit who was also part of the negotiating committee with Local 101, confirmed the tentative agreement and said the members have yet to vote on it. He declined to comment further.

Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 101 Business Manager Scott Deitz has declined to comment, and a secretary told the News-Democrat that he is “unavailable” to answer any questions.

Teamsters Union Local 50 President Scott Alexander could not be reached for comment. The union has not disclosed any further details.

At the time of the strike, Alexander said the union had also filed unfair labor practices with the National Labor Relations Board against two companies, but he would not disclose which companies had been accused.

According to the Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 101 Web site, the union’s 300-plus members were asked to “report to work Wednesday as usual.” The web page also told members “there will be no pickets.”

Contact reporter Will Buss at or 618-239-2526.