All over the United States, steel producing plants are lying idle, gripped by the 2 1/2-month-old steel strike, now causing a creeping paralysis in the nation's other industries.
All over the United States, steel producing plants are lying idle, gripped by the 2 1/2-month-old steel strike, now causing a creeping paralysis in the nation's other industries. One of the strike-bound centres is the Bethlehem Steel Company's gigantic complex at Sparrows Point, Maryland...world's largest steel plant. Already a quarter of a million employees in other industries have been made idle, - the car industry is the hardest hit.
Steelworker's Union President, David McDonald, said, in a Washington interview, that his Union would try to prevent the granting of an injunction under the Taft-Hartley law forcing the 1/2 million steel-men back to work for a period of 80 days while efforts to settle the strike continued. He also said (SOF) that if the strike is not settled after an 80-day "cooling-off period" his workers would come out on strike again.
At the White House, President Eisenhower was told by the Board appointed to enquire into the strike, that its efforts to mediate the dispute had failed. The Government has therefore applied for a Federal court injunction (under the Taft-Hartley law) to end the strike temporarily. Immediately afterwards the striking United Steelworkers' Union asked the court not to issue the injunction. Union President McDonald has threatened that the steelworkers would go to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary to fight against issuing the court order.
Press Secretary James Hagerty read (SOF) - for the benefit of newsreel cameramen - President Eisenhower's announcement explaining that the injunction was being sought - in the interests of all American people - because collective bargaining had failed. It was a sad day for the nation, ended the President's message.
The Federal court adjourned, October 20, after hearing Government and Union petitions, and is to resume later today (Oct. 21), but it is not certain whether a ruling will be made at this resumed session.
Cause of the steel strike: disagreement between the Union and employers over a wide range of Union wage and benefit claims.