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Steelworkers to demonstrate at CTNA HQ

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United Steelworker members will hold a demonstration at Continental Tire North America Inc.'s Charlotte, N.C., headquarters tomorrow to protest what the union calls "destructive policies" at the company's Charlotte consumer tire plant.

The current labor contract between the two parties expires this Sunday. The union has authorized its members in Charlotte to strike if an agreement is not reached before expiration.

Continental submitted its final offer to the Steelworkers three days ago. It was the company's ninth offer since last October, according to a Continental spokesman.

The tiremaker wants to reduce costs at the Charlotte factory by $32 million.

"Cuts this drastic would reduce pay and wages some 35%, strip retirees of health care benefits and allow the company to operate in Charlotte with wages far less than what is paid to any other workers at major tire producers anywhere in North America," say union officials.

Continetal will indefinitely suspend production in Charlotte this September if its demands are not met by the union.

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