Sunoco protest

February 26, 2009 3:43:10 PM PST
Sunoco refinery workers are protesting what they claim are unsafe working conditions.

Some 350 members of the United Steel Workers who work at Sunoco's refineries in South Philadelphia and Marcus Hook gathered at City Hall Thursday afternoon then moved to Sunoco headquarters at 18th and Market.

Their contract with Sunoco expires Sunday and the leadership contends the company proposes to cut jobs that would put lives at risk.

"They say cut back! We say fight back!"

The union says the company proposes to cut 108 workers at the South Philadelphia refinery and another 80 at the Marcus Hook refinery.

"We want to be able to go to work, come home alive, see our families, we think the community deserves the refinery to be run safely in their neighborhood," said Jim Savage a union member.

"If this company wants to draw a line in the sand we're prepared to take the fight to the street and we will win! We will win!" exclaimed Tim Klobi to those gathered at City Hall.

Sunoco released a statement saying: Sunoco doesn't compromise on safety. The staffing levels it proposes are found in refineries across the country. Those refineries operate safely everyday. We are committed to operating our refineries in a safe, reliable and environmentally sound manner?

Sunoco and the steel workers are trying to reach a bargaining agreement, the current contract expires on Sunday.

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