On the Picket Line

Ky. Teamsters continue strike for contract at DSI Tunneling

By Maggie Trowe
October 19, 2020

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Thirteen steel fabrication workers, who voted in the Teamsters union at DSI Tunneling here last November, have been on strike for their first contract since Aug. 4. They are hanging tough on the picket line and continue to receive solidarity from fellow workers and unionists. Truckers blow their loud air horns and other motorists honk as they pass by.

“The Teamsters are standing with us,” said Jimmy Kolle, who has worked at the factory both under DSI and previous owners and taken part in earlier organizing efforts. “We tried to get the union in the past, but I feel like we have a better chance this time.

“People forget what they’re really worth when the bosses beat you down, until you start believing them,” Kolle said. “But the owners make their profit from the know-how and labor of the workers.”

DSI bosses have been stalling on negotiating a contract to try to erode support for the union.

“DSI is all about ‘take, take, take,’” striker John Street told the Militant  on the picket line Oct. 2. “Our last raise was seven years ago. The company cut off our health insurance” when the strike started, he said. “Now I’m paying $1,560 a month for my wife and me!”

This small but determined group of strikers needs broad support. Send contributions and messages of solidarity to Teamsters Local 89, 3813 Taylor Blvd., Louisville, KY 40215.