Coca Cola cancelled health care for employees, now approximately 500 workers are on strike and some are suing the company. Among the complaints are "employee surveillance, intimidation and bad faith bargaining."
Workers claim canceling health care violates a federal law known as ERISA, setting minimum standard for providing health care in private industry.
Attorneys representing 500 striking employees at Coke filed a class action lawsuit against the Company yesterday for violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) after Coke canceled the employees' health care. Five plaintiffs were named in the complaint.
"In my almost twenty years of representing workers and unions in labor disputes, it's hard to think of any past instance where I have seen an employer retaliate against its striking workers in a manner as egregious as what the Coca-Cola Bottling Company has done here," said Dmitri Iglitzin, an attorney at Schwerin Campbell Barnard Iglitzin & Lavitt, an employment law firm in based in Seattle.
"Cutting off the medical benefits to more than 500 workers, knowing that many of them rely on those benefits on a day-to-day basis and will be irreparably harmed if they lose those benefits is a brutal, full-scale attack by Coke on its own workers," Iglitzin said.Cartoon by Robs Right and Ken Culotta