RemArms In Hot Water With United Mine Workers of America Union

Supreme Court Will not Hear Appeal of CT case to Protect Firearms Manufacturers
RemArms In Hot Water With United Mine Workers of America Union

ILION, NEW YORK-(Ammoland.com)-According to an article on Syracuse.com, the new owners of RemArms, Roundhill Group LLC, is in hot water with the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA). UMWA is a powerful union and represented former employees of Remington Arms.

Roundhill Group LLC purchased Remington’s gun factory in the Village of Ilion, NY, and the handgun barrel factory in Lenoir City, TN, for $13 million. A bankruptcy court split up the company and sold off individual parts of the firearms giant to various companies. The factory employees were under union contract until Remington furloughed most of its 701-employees strong workforce at the Ilion factory. About 600 employees were United Mine Workers of America union members.

The new owners sent job offers directly to 200 of the 600 furloughed employees and offered them “at-will” employment within RemArms.

“At-will” employment means that the owners of RemArms could fire the employees at any time without cause as long as the company didn’t terminate the worker for illegal reasons such as race or religion. According to a union spokesperson, Phil Smith, the previous union contract outlined specific reasons why the former owners could fire an employee. The union would defend the employee.

The company is waiting for the ATF to issue a federal firearms license (FFL) to the company before reopening the plant for business. According to the employment offers that RemArms Managing Partner Richmond Italia signed, the projected start date is February 15th of 2021. The union feels that the company should not contact the workers directly and be working with them instead.

The union also disagrees on how RemArms selected the employees that it offered the jobs. The union believes that RemArms have to bring back employees by seniority, but according to the union, the company did not use seniority in its decision-making process. It isn’t clear how RemArms chose the employees to bring back to the plant, and the union doesn’t know the criteria.

Kevin Fagan, an attorney for the union, said that employees would not return to work unless under the previous contract. Fagan also explained that the UMWA would not permit workers to return to work unless it was with the union’s blessings.

“As I am sure you know, our members constitute an experienced and highly productive workforce,” Fagan wrote to the management RemArms. “They worked diligently for your predecessor to manufacture world-class products and will do the same for you. However, they will not – and the UMWA will not – permit their work standards and conditions to be unilaterally imposed.”

The union claims that in Roundhill Group LLC’s deal for the plants, the company said it would abide by the union contract. Smith argues that it was one of the sale’s conditions and insinuated that the court would not have approved the deal without the union contract’s protections. Smith says that the RemArms has not claimed that the contract was invalid.

RemArms also asked the employees to give up certain legal rights. One of the rights that the union highlighted was the right to separation pay. Under the union contract, the previous owners guaranteed employees severance packages. Under the new offer, RemArms could fire employees without any severance terms.

AmmoLand could not reach anyone at RemArms for comment.


About John Crump

John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, or at www.crumpy.com.

John Crump

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Captn John
Captn John
3 months ago

If in charge I’d start moving all machinery to the Carolinas. Lower taxes, lower cost of living, and NY is only getting worse by the day. Why stay in a state that hates your product? Offer top employees incentive to move and get out of NY.

Neanderthal75
Neanderthal75
3 months ago

Screw the Union! All they are these days is legalized Mafia! Let the Union tell the new owners of the plant to do this, that, or else! Then the owners can simply dismantle everything in the factory, put them in shipping containers, and move to a location down South that is a right to work state. Sell the old manufacturing site for the best money you can get, retool at the new location, and hire people who can actually put together products that work when they are supposed to work, and how they are supposed to work, rather than pieces… Read more »

American Patriot
American Patriot
3 months ago

I’m not a union guy & never have been. So there’s a reason Big Green went bankrupt & Colt too. If you can’t make a profit you can’t stay in business therefore you need to hire the best seniority doesn’t play a part in the best for the most part. Like Govt workers the most seniority does the least work & has the highest pay & benefits.

Bill
Bill
3 months ago

Interesting to say, “Our members constitute an experienced and highly productive workforce,” while at the same time seeking to forbid an employer from hiring the people that it considers experienced and highly productive. This is the usual bureaucratic scam work, whether it comes from unions or government. Act as if you are being wise and just, but in fact push your preferred brand of corruption.

BrassBandit
BrassBandit
3 months ago

Remington’s problems were many, quality being one, lack of any real innovation being another which brings Colt to mind. Perhaps the employees being called back should be happy to have a job OFFER and tell the union to bugger off. The union obviously didn’t save their jobs, it likely hastened the loss.

Chuck
Chuck
3 months ago

The union protection of many non-productive employees contributed greatly to the demise of Remington in the first place. Labor costs are the biggest expense in manufacturing. Why would the new owners want to start back up the production facilities with one arm tied behind their backs? It appears they did their research and found out who the best employees were and made them an offer that the potential employees are free to take or walk away from, that’s the American way. Looks like the only losers here will be the union bosses that make a living off of the workers… Read more »

musicman44mag
musicman44mag
3 months ago
Reply to  Chuck

It concerns me that they might not get a higher wage. But if they do along with health care that is just as good if not better than before then this is a perfect example of what needs to be done. Your first statement of how the union protects workers that should be fired is spot on. In Kommiefornia they try even harder to save and protect you if you are a person of color because the only reason you really want to get rid of them (if you are white) is because you are racist or (if you are… Read more »

TStheDeplorable
TStheDeplorable
3 months ago

So the union is doing its damnedest to convince the remnants of Remington to move out of New York. I guarantee the new owners have their lawyers drawing up a list of “right to work” states for their consideration. It sucks to move all that equipment, but this is a good time to do it. Who really thinks an employer should not have the same right to fire a worker as the worker has the right to fire the company by quitting for any reason, or for no reason at all? If you want to “own” a job, start your… Read more »

musicman44mag
musicman44mag
3 months ago

Amen. Each time a union is destroyed we take away the power of the demonrats because they control the unions.

Smitty
Smitty
3 months ago

I am amazed at people’s use of communist when referring to Unions!! Anyone who has been involved in “Collective Bargaining” knows the group is banding together to bargain as a group so the group is stronger in numbers vs individually. The “at will employees May be fired at any time by anyone on a whim. Please remember that Union’s are in no way communist, that’s typical of employer’s when approaching negotiations. No one gives up their right to work they just use a United voice to bargain for better wages and benefits for the group. Just my opinion. Thanks Raymond

Wass
Wass
3 months ago
Reply to  Smitty

Two thumbs up! Without a union, workers have no representation, nor ability to negotiate for wages or conditions. As for comparison to communists: AF of L leader, George Meany, was a legendary labor anti-communist, as was founder Samuel Gompers.

Last edited 3 months ago by Wass
willyd
willyd
3 months ago
Reply to  Wass

See my comment below, when it came to working to save my jobs, they did nothing to save it or got screwed by them through seniority clauses!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

musicman44mag
musicman44mag
3 months ago
Reply to  Wass

In most of those situations everything is done by time served, did you pass the test and who is your buddy. Merit of quality of work has no gain for upward mobility. You have to pass a test and know someone higher up. In my experience, employees that rat on other employees and would lie to save their ass and their bosses ass are the ones that get ahead. Or, in my female dominant work force, the males that would service the women would get ahead too. Not the truth sayers and God forgive if you are a by the… Read more »

Laddyboy
Laddyboy
3 months ago

Gee! This “at-will” policy is how Seers is working with its “service” people. As agreed upon by both parties, they can fire a “worker” for any reason. However, If a “worker” quits “for any reason as stated in the hiring agreement”, that person is dragged to the unemployment office and is bound with UNREASONABLE financial PENALTIES.

Mudhunter
Mudhunter
3 months ago

It should be a simple matter to discover what the bankruptcy judge signed off on.

If the new owners agreed to maintain the union agreement, then the court will enforce it.

I’ve never been part of an union and the attitude that a union will not permit an employee to work is exactly why I would not be part of one. I have no problem with collective bargaining, but I would never sign over authority over my sovereign choice to go to work, nor allow someone have dictatorial power over my life. Fairness is one thing, thuggery is totally different.

JDL
JDL
3 months ago

Worked my entire career (40+ years) as an “at will” employee. If you are competent and perform, you have nothing to worry about. If benefits, such as severance packages, are the norm in the industry, then the new owners will eventually have to offer them to keep good employees from going elsewhere. The union in this case is attempting to force communist principles on the company. Employees should be hired, retained, and promoted based on demonstrated ability, not seniority.

musicman44mag
musicman44mag
3 months ago
Reply to  JDL

Amen

MB
MB
3 months ago

Maybe if the former workers actually gave a crap about what they were doing and built firearms that would actually fire, maybe Remington would still be in business….

RoyD
RoyD
3 months ago
Reply to  MB

There were many fingers in that pie.

willyd
willyd
3 months ago
Reply to  RoyD

I was involved with Unions for the better part of my working life, when it came down to the Union saving my job, NOT HAPPENING! Management problem along with Unions not giving, does a good job of putting companies out of business! The companies can’t weed out the slackers, which the Unions protect, while somebody who puts out usually gets the SHAFT!!!! MY THOUGHTS!!!!!!

Chris Mallory
Chris Mallory
3 months ago

And once again the working man gets treated like a 3 legged dog.

JDL
JDL
3 months ago
Reply to  Chris Mallory

Only because the union hacks treated the company like a communist entitlement. The only ones in danger of not getting their jobs back under an “at will” scenario are the ones who are useless. A useless, highly incompetent “worker” is an eco omic liability to any company regardless of their seniority, and puts everyone else’s job at risk. It’s these union that protects these jack-legs that is the entity mistreating the COMPETENT working man.

uncle dudley
uncle dudley
3 months ago

Roundhill Group should move all firearm production out of New York to a gun friendly state with lower overhead operating costs.

JDL
JDL
3 months ago
Reply to  uncle dudley

And an open shop state.

Grigori
Grigori
3 months ago

I wish I could get an extra barrel for my RM380. I wonder if there are any at the Lenoir City, TN facility to be had, or anyone there to dig one out and sell it if there is. Like many, my RM380 has a severely buggered up bore and is not accurate beyond a few feet.

Considerthis
Considerthis
3 months ago
Reply to  Grigori

CDNN Investments in Texas evidently bought up a lot of Remington parts in the liquidation process. It is possible they might have what you seek.

JDL
JDL
3 months ago
Reply to  Grigori

What makes you think a new one made by the same folks would be any better?

Felixd
Felixd
3 months ago

It looks as if the union lacks standing in this matter. It appears that the union is trying use the court to enforce an agreement that does not exist against Roundhill.

musicman44mag
musicman44mag
3 months ago
Reply to  Felixd

Gee, now doesn’t that sound like something a demonrat would do and constantly does so in business and in politics!