Members of RWDSU/UFCW Local 125 who work at National Beef Leathers in St. Joseph, Mo., ratified a new contract in July that raises wages and protects benefits. Over 400 workers are employed at the National Beef Leathers plant, where they process cowhide into blue leather, which is then sold to vendors that turn it into everything from shoes to car seat covers.
The five-year contract increases wages and includes a $1,000 signing bonus. The agreement also includes longevity pay increases based on a member gaining five years seniority and again at 10 years seniority, numerous improvements in language, as well in seniority and funeral leave. The agreement also created eight new positions that will be known as a Flex Employee in the Production Department (that will be a basic relief person in that department). Additionally, the contract maintains the company’s medical insurance with little change in the plan starting in January of 2021 with little premium increases to the members.