released on Friday that “we look forward to continuing our negotiations with
U.S. Steel in the near future,” of more concern at the moment is a letter
which USS sent to retirees earlier in the week, advising them of a Dec. 16
deadline for open enrollment for benefits and warning them “of potentially
substantial premium increases.”
“We urge anyone
with questions to contact the company’s benefits service center at the
number or e-mail address provided in the letter,” the USW said.
“We are committed
to bargaining an agreement that ensures fair treatment for our members and
retirees, and we are hopeful that we can head off the ‘worst-case scenario’
premium increases the company threatened in its letter this week,” the union
said. “We will continue to keep everyone informed about this situation as
In the meantime,
the union reminded the membership that, since the expiration of the previous
contract on Sept. 1, members have been working under an “an extension” of
the expired contract.
extension is in effect, the company remains bound by our basic labor
agreement, including our grievance procedure and other important
provisions,” the USW said.