Sahuarita, Ariz. -- The strike against ASARCO reaches its 90th day. Congressman Grijalva and other legislators joined ASARCO workers on the picket line as a sign of solidarity.
They also came together in hopes this strike gets national attention.
“What do we want? A fair contract! When do we want it? Now!”
This is that chant that could be heard throughout the strike.
Over 100 people joined the picket line near the entrance to ASARCO’s Mission Mine in Sahuarita, including Manny Armenta, who has been on the line since day one.
“We’re saying no more to unfair working conditions and people deserve a pay raise and people deserve better benefits, said Armenta.
He adds ASARCO workers have not had a wage increase in 10 years.
“And they expect 62% of the workforce to go another 4 years without a wage increase, they want to double up on their premium and deductible, they want to freeze up their pension plan. That’s uncalled for,” he told KGUN9.
ASARCO is a subsidiary of corporate giant Grupo Mexico, the third-largest mining company in the United States.
“Grupo Mexico has a history of treating all of their workers bad in all countries they operate in and they want to do the same thing here and we’re not going to put up with it,” said Armenta.
Congressman Raul Grijalva also formed a part of the picket line. He says he, along with other lawmakers were there to bring more attention to this strike.
“Part of the reason to be here, and part of the reason to bring support from California and other parts of the country, is to let these workers know--you’re not alone, you’re going to have support, and we’ve got to win this strike,” said Congressman Grijalva.
So, as he brings national awareness to this strike, here’s his message to Grupo Mexico.
“It’s not just about the bottom line. This company makes billions and billions of profits a year. It’s a national issue...and people from this country are having their hard earned benefits threatened. The more we have a national focus on this strike, the better the chances of winning are going to be. We’re here for the duration. Just like they are.
KGUN9 has reached out to ASARCO while covering this ongoing strike, The company has yet to comment.