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Factory Sit-In Ends With $1.75 Million Deal

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Factory Sit-In Ends With $1.75 Million Deal

Union President Armando Robles announces the deal. (WBEZ/Chip Mitchell)

A sit-in by laid-off employees of a Chicago window factory has ended in what the workers are calling victory.

The sit-in began last Friday after Republic Windows and Doors closed with only a few days’ notice. Federal law requires 60 days’ notice before a mass layoff.

The company blamed Bank of America, which has received billions of federal bailout dollars. That fed criticism that the bailout has left working people to fend for themselves.

Now this factory’s workers say they’ve prevailed. Sergio Revuelta is a steward at the plant for employees’ union, the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE).

REVUELTA: If you think they’ve broken your rights and you think you can fight for the right thing, you never give up.

The agreement commits the bank to paying $1.35 million for worker severance packages. Another creditor, JP Morgan Chase, has agreed to add $400,000.

Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-Chicago), who helped broker the deal, says it includes nothing for the factory’s owners.

More: Sit-In Captures Labor Movement’s Imagination.

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