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June 6, 2016

Sheet Metal Workers Suspend Union Strike, Briefly Disrupting North Construction

Sheet Metal Workers on strike in front of Campus North.

Sheet Metal Workers on strike in front of Campus North.

Sarah Manhardt / The Chicago Maroon

A strike of the union local representing sheet metal workers briefly disrupted construction of Campus North Residential Commons last week.

Sheet Metal Workers’ Local 73, which represents several thousand employees in Cook County and Lake County, negotiates a single contract with the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association (SMACNA), which represents local contractors.

On May 31, Local 73 members voted down a contract offered by SMACNA. The next day, workers set up a picket outside the Campus North construction site.

The strike continued as Local 73 and SMACNA entered negotiations Friday. Negotiations resulted in a new contract, which union leadership endorsed. Union membership will vote on the contract tomorrow, and have suspended the strike in the meantime. If the contract is rejected, the strike will resume Wednesday.

According to University spokesperson Jeremy Manier, the impact of the strike on Campus North construction was mostly limited to one day and is not expected to delay the completion of the dorm.

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