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RALLY PLANNED AT FERMI II POWER PLANT BY UTILITY WORKERS LOCAL 223; DETROIT EDISON CHARGED WITH 'HOLDING HOSTAGES' DURING LABOR DISPUTE

 RALLY PLANNED AT FERMI II POWER PLANT BY UTILITY WORKERS LOCAL 223;
 DETROIT EDISON CHARGED WITH 'HOLDING HOSTAGES' DURING LABOR DISPUTE
 NEWPORT, Mich., June 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The following was released today by the Utility Workers Union of America Local 223, AFL-CIO:
 On Thursday, June 11, members of Local 223, concerned citizens and community leaders will gather at the entrance to Fermi II Power Plant. This coalition will protest the unjustified and unsafe lockout of the represented workers belonging to the Utility Workers of America.
 The demonstration, scheduled to begin at 5 p.m., will question Detroit Edison's claims that the nuclear power plant can run safely. Despite Edison's public assurances that the plant would continue to operate safely, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has already noted several "incidents." The NRC is now reviewing Edison's work stoppage strategy. On June 9, the Monroe County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to investigate the replacement work practices at Fermi after the public expressed concerns during the regular monthly meeting.
 In addition, the union continues to express outrage at the company's treatment of Fermi workers as "hostages."
 "The company first insulted our Fermi people by claiming it would be 'unsafe' to keep them working after contract expiration," explained Local 223 President George Manoogian. "Then, Detroit Edison turned them out onto the street, cutting off their income, their benefits and putting their families in financial jeopardy.
 "Detroit Edison holds their livelihood 'hostage,' and the ransom they are demanding is a concession-filled contract from the rest of our workers. Likewise, the company is also holding the safety of the community 'hostage.' They just put over 200 trained and experienced workers on the street. The company states that they were replaced by 'qualified' workers. The union contends that there is no substitute for experience."
 Notable aspects of the rally: Formal presentation of "relief" checks from fellow workers to Fermi workers. Thousands of dollars have been donated in the first week. Scheduled attendees include Sisters of Immaculate Heart of Mary, present and past Monroe County commissioners, and officials of Berlin Township. Manoogian will issue a statement at approximately 5:30 p.m.
 -0- 6/10/92
 /CONTACT: George Manoogian, president, 313-846-3040 or (home) 313-433-3483, or Mike Langford, treasurer, 313-846-3040 or (home) 313-243-6511, both of Utility Workers Local 223/
 (DTE) CO: Utility Workers Union of America Local 223; Detroit Edison ST: Michigan IN: UTI SU:


JG -- DE009 -- 8805 06/10/92 11:56 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 10, 1992
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