Striking Red Cross workers rally

TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) – Striking Red Cross workers rallied Tuesday, a day that recognizes labor unions.

The first day of May is commonly referred to as May Day, which was perfect for the workers, who have been on strike since March 27.

Members of the UFCW Local 75 used the day as a way to rally their members. Local 75 members were joined by elected officials, and members in two unions who were also on strike from Cleveland and Lansing, Michigan.

"The Red Cross is a very important organization in our country and globally, and I think that they have a chance to show that through the work that they do in saving lives, they do so by respecting the lives of those that work for them and there is a way to get to home base, there's a way to negotiate and to reach a contract that is fair to all across the Midwest." said Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur.

Working without a contract for the last 4 years, the 130 workers in the Red Cross blood services division are holding for a fair contract. They say they want a contract that doesn't take away from their collective bargaining rights when it comes to health care.

Workers will be on the picket lines for at least another two weeks, when the two sides head back to the bargaining table on May 14.

"I think the image that I'm worried about is that of the Red Cross. You know, they're supposed to a humanitarian organization and look what they're doing to these folks so, I think they should worry about their image and our image is that we stand with our members." said Local 75 member Bill Dudley.

Red Cross officials have said in the past that the strike will not impact the blood supply in local hospitals. The contract they cannot agree on is the same contract that has been offered to all non-union members who work with the Red Cross.

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