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A LOOK BACK AT LOCAL BUSINESS NEWS - MAY 1, 1997
Carrier strike.jpg

Here’s a look back 25 years ago in the Southern Standard archives to when more than 1,100 Carrier employees at the Morrison plant walked off the job and onto the picket line.


Failed negotiations of a three-year contract triggered the strike for union workers with Local 483 International Association of Sheet Metal Workers.


The union said 1,143 members were on strike with the Carrier plant’s total workforce given at 1,300.


The points of contention were wage increases, progression rates for new employees, insurance benefits and retirement benefits.


“It’s not something we wanted to do. It’s something we were forced to do,” said Danny Green, business manager for the union. “Our final offer that we came down to was very reasonable and the company was not interested.”


The local Carrier plant was constructed in 1968 and billed as the largest commercial air conditioning manufacturing plant in the world. At the time of the strike, CarrierwasWarrenCounty’s largest employer.


Carrier countered in a statement: “We’re disappointed our workforce voted to strike. We believe the company’s offer is fair. It provides our employees competitive wages and benefits and allows the company to maintain its competitive position in our industry.”


Carrier made a second offer three weeks later that was voted down by union workers on May 23, 1997.


“We’ll stay out until an offer is presented that the people can live with,” said Green.


That offer came Friday, June 6 when the union voted to accept the third Carrier contract proposal and return to work Monday morning, June 9.


The 1997 strike marked the second time Carrier workers marched the picket line. An estimated 1,600 Carrier employees went on strike on May 21, 1979 in a work stoppage that lingered for 13 weeks.


The Carrier plant closed in Warren County in 2005.