A union-made remodel?

UnionlabelSpeaking of the striking writers’ union, are you pro-union, anti-union or somewhere in the center?

I’ve got my own pro-union bias because my dad was a union lather in the San Fernando Valley when I was growing up. I had a stay-at-home mom for me and my two siblings, and we lived in a house my parents bought new in Granada Hills, and we had a boat and two cars and a camper and trips to Yosemite. And all because of that union salary, life was pretty darned comfortable. Most lathers these days probably have trouble renting a crummy apartment.

So all this makes me think of buying stuff for a home and remodel that is made by union workers. (This is aside from hiring union workers for a remodel.)

It’s one thing to say I’m pro-union, another to buy union. So I looked on the AFL-CIO’s Union Label website for some home- and remodeling-type stuff that is union made, and here’s some of what I found:

All-Clad Metalcrafters, Canonsburg, Penn.
Brand Name: All-Clad
Union: 72 Local: 3403, Dist. 4
Description: Household cooking utensils

Anchor Hocking Glass Co., Lancaster, Ohio
Brand Name: Anchor Glass
Union: 72 Local: 25
Description: Glass

Electrolux Home Products, Greenville, Mich.
Brand Names: Electrolux, Frigidaire, Gibson, Kenmore, Tapon
Union: UAW Local: 137
Description: Home appliances

GE Appliances., Louisville, Ken.
Brand Names: Hotpoint, Spacemaker, Profile
Union: IUE-CWA Local: 761

Kohler, Kohler, Wis.
Brand Name: Kohler
Union: UAW
Description: Plumbing fixtures

Lenox Manufacturing, Pomona, N.J.
Brand Names: Gorham, Kirk-Stieff
Union: GMP Local: 236-A
Description: Silver and plated ware

Northland Corp., Greenville, Mich.
Brand Name: Northland
Union: UAW Local: 308
Description: Heavy appliances

Pillowtex, Tunica, Miss.
Brand Name: Pillowtex
Union: UAW Local: 6519
Description: Blankets, comforters and beddings

Rival Co., Kansas City, Mo.
Brand Names: Rival, Simer, Pollenex, Bioinaire, Patton
Union: IAM
Description: Home appliances

Rubbermaid, Wooster, Ohio
Brand Name: Rubbermaid
Union: 72 Local: 302L, Dist. 1

Sealy Mattress, Williamsport, Md.
Brand Name: Sealy Mattress
Union: TG Local: 0741T
Description: Bedding

Steelcraft Mfg. Corp., Cincinnati, Ohio
Brand name: Perma Door
Union: 72 Local: 7697, Dist. 1
Description: Metal doors, sash and trim

White-Westinghouse Electric Co., Elkhart and Cornersville, Ind.
Brand Name: White-Westinghouse
Union: IUE-CWA Local: Local 999
Description: Household cooking utensils

White-Westinghouse Electric Corp., Buffalo, N.Y.
Brand Name: Westinghouse
Union: IUE-CWA Local:
Description: Heavy appliances

2 Comments on A union-made remodel?

  1. Carl Heldmann

    It’s hard to buy American. Companies are disingenuous when they claim to be American.
    Several of the companies you have listed have already shipped tens of thousands of jobs to cheap labor markets in Asia & Mexico.
    Two that come to mind are Electrolux and Pillowtex.
    Electrolux closed their plant in Greenville and sent the jobs to Mexico. Devistated the town!
    Here’s a blurb:
    “Greenville is a small western Michigan town in an area known for conservatism. Downtown is about four blocks long, and there are already a couple of empty storefronts. Call the mayor’s office and the receptionist tells you to call him at his other job.
    But it’s a community that’s learned hard economic lessons in recent months. Not only is Electrolux moving to Mexico, where it will pay workers about 10 per cent of the $13 to $15 an hour that workers in Greenville make, but also Federal Mogul, where members of UAW Locals 2017 and 1158 make parts for Ford Motor Co., has threatened to close unless the union makes concessions.”
    Here’s a blurb on Pillowtex from Duke University:
    “Pillowtex operated a number of different plants in the United States and Canada. Sixteen will close. All total, more than 7,000 people lost their jobs without warning. The vast majority of these jobs, approximately 5,500, were located in North Carolina. On top of this, almost 5,000 of these jobs were clustered in a two county area (Martinez, 2003). Unemployment statistics in these counties doubled after the Pillowtex. In addition to laying off the most people in North Carolina history, the Pillowtex closing led to one of the greatest job losses ever in the American textiles.”
    And so it goes, on & on & on. And as a nation of sheep, we just keep following our “Leaders”
    Carl Heldmann

  2. sheila

    thanks for this! i think that taking care of humans is just as important as taking care of the planet, and until something better comes along, unions are one of the best ways to make sure working people get paid…
    i will keep the list in mind when i purchase things for my little place. you can imagine that some of us are now hoping you will cross-reference the union labels with the “green” or “sustainable” labels so we can have a shortcut to heaven!