Saturday, September 11, 2010

Former Anheuser Busch Workers, Now Known As ABINBEV Vote YES To Join IBEW Local 363

The workers at the ABINBEV Metal Container Corporation in Newburgh have chosen IBEW Local 363 to represent them in collective bargaining.

The workers at the ABINBEV Metal Container Corporation have chosen IBEW Local 363 to represent them in collective bargaining in an election that was held on Friday August 27 and Saturday August 28 by the National Labor Relations Board.

These workers manufacture the cans for Budweiser Beer and other beverage companies affiliated with the company which is now called ABINBEV after the sale of the Anheuser Busch Company to INBEV - a Belgium owned company.

This campaign started approximately 6 months ago and there was a tremendous amount of work put into this effort by countless workers at the plant and by IBEW Local

A group of workers came to IBEW Local 363 in early February and spoke about how much they were losing with the new foriegn owned company. Soon after and through much effort, Local 363 began to increase the number of employees involved and held numerous small meetings with the workers on each shift.

Through their own efforts, the workers themselves brought more than double the amount of authorization cards required by law to file for the election to the union.

At that time, Senior Assistant Business Manager Sam Fratto became involved and suggested that they try a new way to organize the workers throughout the process – by using the electronic media and creating a blog that all of the workers could have access to 24 hours a day. The theory was that the blog would equalize the captive audience meetings and the fact that physical access to the workers was limited. It worked great and is still being used today in this next part of the election / negotiation process. The blog address is

On Saturday night, August 28 the majority of workers chose to have IBEW Local 363 as their collective bargaining agent.

There was much pressure applied by the company and many veiled threats were levied at the people. This is a solid group of workers who are very proud to become members of the IBEW and especially of Local 363 and they held strong. After the election there were workers who voted no calling the union everyday stating that they would be supporting the union and that they were sorry they voted no because of immense pressure from the company.

They understand the power associated with having a written contract to work under. With the sale of AB, the workers knew they had to take steps of their own to protect themselves and they contacted Local 363 to make that happen. They picked the right union to do that!

There are now 164 NEW IBEW 363 union members in the Hudson Valley because of their courage and effort to band together to join the union and to speak with one voice.

Hopefully, more workers in the Hudson Valley will see that there is a choice available when it seems that everything is being taken from them - call in the IBEW or any other union in the area. Organize.

Now the ABINBEV workers have a voice at the table with the multi-billion dollar company from Belgium that owns the former AB Budweiser Brand.


Anonymous said...

Sam has helped us be a strong team.
The managers of MCC NEWBURGH are useless if they work 3 hours out of a whole day Brito is lucky.
They are good at making team members feel threaten. That's why we had no choice we were losing things and being degraded.We love being a part of IBEW they make us feel good about things again.

Anonymous said...

i would like to thank sam for all his help and time on the new mcc ibew 363 union. now we start on our contract. this is gonna be a great wb site for us and everybod in the hudon valley going threw what we have been threw any questions we can help with you can get answers here.mcc frontender union strong 363

Anonymous said...

sam was a great hep for all of us at abinbev ibew 363. that is great to say.lets get our contract rolling and show all hudson valley how strong we are.mcc frontender

Anonymous said...

We are proud to be part of local 363. They are great!

Troy Ashdown said...

Hey everybody, this is Troy Ashdown from CSEA Kingston giving Sammy Fratto a big congratulations for doing a great job on organizing the workers at ABINEV!!! Sammy is a good friend of mine and the workers at Newburgh are lucky to him as thier representative. I am happy for all involved! Sam and I have worked together on several labor issues in the past and has always been a big help to me and our workers in Kingston.

Anonymous said...

I work at MCC Newburgh and I am glad we have a union now Sam gave us hope now it's time to get down to getting a contract.

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the organized labor community ABINBEV! We are glad to have ya! Now you can play a roll in collective bargaining as a 50-50 partner at the table rather then taking whatever the company decides to give out. Remember,united we bargain, devided we beg!

Anonymous said...

I work at MCC Newburgh and i'm proud to be union.This is the best thing that happened for us in a long time we hope our sister plants join us soon.

Anonymous said...

I work in the corp office in St Louis and I am very proud of Newburgh they took a gaint step in the right direction they were going to lose more.Good Luck to all of you.

Anonymous said...

All a Union can do is ask and the Company has every right to say "NO." Employees may end up with more, the same, or less than they currently have. Collective bargaining involves risk.

Enjoying paying dues as I am sure the Union will negotiate union security and dues checkoff before they get anything for the employees.