Workers at Routh Packing Approve New Union Contract

On March 26, 2015, workers at Routh Packing in Sandusky, Ohio voted to approve a new four-year agreement with the company that protects benefits, raises wages, and guarantees adequate hours. The new union contract will cover more than 200 workers at the slaughterhouse and packing plant.

Routh Packing is one of the oldest independently owned slaughterhouses in the state. Workers at the plant process pork for distribution under the Daisyfield brand name. Employees at the plant are members of UFCW Local 75, a union representing workers in supermarkets, drug stores, food processing and packing plants, and health care facilities in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky.

The new union contract raises wages for all Routh employees by at least a dollar over the course of the agreement. Many workers will receive an additional wage increase upfront, as the rates for some of the more difficult and dangerous jobs are set to go up. The union bargaining committee was also able to negotiate an increase in the employer-funded pension contribution.

Dave Stebel, a 17-year employee of Routh Packing, was a member of the union bargaining committee that negotiated the new contract. Dave says the agreement is the strongest he’s seen since he started with the company.

“Contract negotiations are always hard. We had to stick together and fight for everything we got,” Dave says. “But I’m really proud of what we won here. This contract is good for workers and it’s going to help the company attract and keep qualified people.”

Higher wages and secure benefits mean a better future for Routh Packing workers, their families, and their community. As more and more working people across Ohio are being forced to take on two or three jobs just to make ends meet, UFCW Local 75 members at Routh Packing are protecting family-sustaining jobs here in Sandusky.

Union members voted to accept the new contract on March 26. The new agreement will go into affect immediately after the previous contract expires on April 5, 2015.