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Update: Chemours Fayetteville Works plant employees set to vote on unionization

The chemical company's union election was not successful, but employees say they will continue to pursue improved working conditions.

Update: The unionization vote at Chemours Fayetteville Chemical Works has failed. According to a press release from LIUNA, the union representing Chemours' employees, the election resulted in fewer than half the participants voting in favor of unionization. A representative of the union said in a statement that “the fight is not over,” and that workers at the plant still deserve fair wages, job security, and a good working environment.

The Chemours Fayetteville Chemical Works Plant is attempting to unionize, with an official union election taking place this Thursday and Friday.

Chemours is a chemical production company best known for producing PFAS, or forever chemicals.

Edsel McDonald is the LIUNA Local 919 Business Manager, and is working with more than 200 Chemours employees who qualify. He said more than half have signed authorization cards, meaning they have signed their intention to form a union.

“Majority of the people at this plant want this. And the company is trying their best to use scare tactics in order to control them to not vote on something that will absolutely benefit them.”

McDonald says the employees were concerned about mandatory overtime, safety issues, and a lack of job security.

He added that Chemours has sent a stream of anti-union emails to its workers. Asked for comment, Chemours sent a statement that it is "passionate about educating our employees and are encouraging them to vote for the best choice for themselves and their families.”

The election results will be available after the ballots close at 8 p.m. on Friday. McDonald says several other Chemours plants across the country are unionized, but this will be the first plant to work with LIUNA.

Once affiliated with Dupont, Chemours became an independent company in 2015, absorbing many potential liabilities associated with PFAS chemicals. The Fayetteville Chemical Works is one of 30 production facilities that Chemours operates across nine countries.

Kelly Kenoyer is an Oregonian transplant on the East Coast. She attended University of Oregon’s School of Journalism as an undergraduate, and later received a Master’s in Journalism from University of Missouri- Columbia. Contact her on Twitter @Kelly_Kenoyer or by email:
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