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  • Writer's picturethePLAINESTjane

Frito-Lay strike + Worker Mistreatment Documentation and Receipts

Updated: Aug 1, 2021

Frito-Lay employees went on a 3 week strike after suffering worker exploitation, exhaustion leading to employee deaths and injuries, being denied worker's compensation and enduring an unsafe work environment. Check the full details from thePLAINESTjane here:

Brandon Ingram is a Black man who was electrocuted on the job, denied disability and worker's compensation in addition to being followed and stalked by company agent in order to "prove" that he was not injured. The footage correlating surveillance was submitted in court (see here). Here are all of the receipts, as promised, for closer examination. Please feel free to SHARE this URL and donate to Brandon + Melissa Ingram's GOFundMe here.

Take a look at this letter from OSHA (yes, the government got involved after the strike made national headlines), timesheets proving abuse of mandatory overtime and other imagery corroborating allegations of an unsafe work environment below via this gallery.

Frito-Lay Statements Regarding Topeka, Kansas Factory Strike

On July 24, 2021 a deal was reached between Frito-Lay and BCTGM Local 218 in Topeka.

We are pleased the BCTGM Local 218 members from Frito-Lay’s Topeka site ratified the revised contract offer and we look forward to welcoming all of our employees back to work next week. At all times we have negotiated in good faith with union representatives to address the most pressing concerns raised regarding hours of work and overtime. While Frito-Lay believed its fully recommended July 1 offer addressed those concerns appropriately, the new offer from Frito-Lay provides a guaranteed day off during each work week, eliminates “squeeze shifts,” creates additional opportunities for the union to have input into staffing and overtime and offers 4% wage increases to employees in all job classifications over the two-year contract. For more than 85 years, Frito-Lay has provided well-paying jobs and benefits to thousands of Americans and made countless contributions to the communities where our teams work and live. Today, we are proud to employ more than 66,000 people and are committed to providing a safe and fair workplace for everyone. We believe our approach to resolving this strike demonstrates how we listen to our employees, and when concerns are raised, they are taken seriously and addressed. Looking ahead, we look forward to continuing to build on what we have accomplished together based on mutual trust and respect.

On July 22, 2021 Frito-Lay presented a revised offer to BCTGM Local 218 in Topeka

Following the union membership’s rejection of the July 1 fully recommended offer and the strike that began on July 5, BCTGM Local 218 requested a meeting. We’ve spent the last three days jointly revisiting the terms of the prior offer and have aligned on a new offer that will better address employee concerns around guaranteed days off and create additional opportunities for the union to have input into staffing and overtime.

Importantly, the revised offer once again includes across-the-board wage increases to employees in all job classifications. We believe this offer addresses the most pressing issues raised by our employees, and we believe it represents a win-win for both the union and Frito-Lay.

We are urging employees to ratify this offer so they can end the strike and return to work. At the request of the union, we cannot release the specifics of the offer at this time.

On July 19, 2021 Frito-Lay CLAIMS TO DISH Topeka Strike Background and Facts

Frito-Lay is and always has been committed to providing a safe and fair workplace for all of our employees. We listen to our employees, and when concerns are raised, they are treated seriously and appropriate measures are taken to address them.

This commitment was reflected in our July 1 offer to BCTGM Local 218 for a two-year contract, prior to the Topeka strike starting July 5, which we believe addresses the concerns that have been raised at our Topeka manufacturing facility. Our good-faith offer – which was endorsed by the entire union bargaining committee, a group elected to represent views of the full bargaining unit – accepted the union’s proposal for across-the-board wage increases and, at Frito-Lay’s suggestion, improved work rules that would reduce overtime and hours worked.

For more than 85 years, Frito-Lay has provided well-paying jobs to thousands of Americans and made countless contributions to the communities where our teams work and live. Today, we are proud to employ more than 66,000 people.

We have a longstanding partnership with unions, including BCTGM Local 218, and this is the first strike at any Frito-Lay facility in three decades – a fact that we believe speaks to the value we place in our associates and all they do. A strike hurts everyone involved – not just the company, but also our associates, their families and our community. It unnecessarily puts our employees at risk of economic hardship, and we remain focused on resolving this matter as fairly and expeditiously as possible based on trust and mutual respect.

Key Facts

Following is an overview of the terms of Frito-Lay’s offer and the current situation at our Topeka facility:

  • Many Associates Continue to be On Site: Of approximately 850 manufacturing and warehouse employees who are part of the bargaining unit currently on strike, approximately 300 have exercised their legal right to continue working.

  • Competitive Wages: Hourly wages at the site range from $18.35 to $36.91 per hour. Frito-Lay has a consistent compensation philosophy to provide competitive, market-based wages based on an analysis of similar jobs. Our overall compensation package, including benefits (medical, pension, wellness), is competitive in the marketplace.

  • Wage Increases: Frito-Lay’s July 1 offer was for a two-year contract with all job classifications getting a 4% wage increase over the two years. This is what the union proposed for wage increases, and Frito-Lay accepted the union’s proposal. Though the union has suggested that Frito-Lay did not meet its terms, Frito-Lay in fact agreed to the union’s proposed economic terms.

  • New Overtime Limits and No More “Squeeze Shifts”: Frito-Lay’s July 1 offer capped required work at 60 hours per week and eliminated “squeeze shifts.” These limits were proposed by Frito-Lay.

  • Topeka Plant Operations: While we work to resolve the strike, we remain focused on continuing to run the operations of the plant in Topeka and have implemented a contingency plan to ensure employee safety.

  • Contributions to Topeka Community: Our Topeka facility is a good and active community partner, including with organizations such as the United Way, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Adopt-a-Family, Toys for Tots, Sole Reason, Project Topeka Community Food Drive and various parades for Topeka and the surrounding area.

In addition, we are deeply troubled by the many inaccurate and misleading allegations that have been made against Frito-Lay, and we believe it is important to set the record straight about workplace conditions at the Topeka facility and our policies and procedures:

  • Overtime Requirements Have Been Overstated: We believe claims about work hours at the Topeka facility have been grossly exaggerated. Out of approximately 850 employees in Topeka, only 20 – approximately 2 percent – averaged over 60 hours per week. Our records indicate 19 employees worked 84 hours in a given work week in 2021, with 16 of those as a result of employees volunteering for overtime and only 3 being required to work. The total number of work weeks at 84 hours is less than .1% of the total for the site. With the overtime restrictions we proposed and were recommending, this would be 0% in the future had the contract Frito-Lay presented been ratified.

  • Employees are Not Required to Continue Working if an Associate Requires Emergency Medical Attention: Frito-Lay wholly rejects the recent allegation as entirely false that an employee “collapsed and died” and the company “moved the body and put in another co-worker to keep the line going.” We are aware of only two instances in the last five years in which an individual has experienced a medical emergency at the plant that unfortunately resulted in that individual passing away. In both cases, medical attention was initially provided at the plant and work ceased until the associates were safely on the way to the hospital.

  • Frito-Lay Provides Mental Health Resources to All Associates: Frito-Lay provides resources for any employee struggling with depression or other mental health issues. We have no knowledge of any associate taking their own life as a result of work conditions and never has anyone taken their own life at the Topeka site.

  • We Follow Strict OSHA-Based Protocols for Fires and Other Emergencies: Fires can occasionally occur in a facility such as ours where high heat (ovens and oil) is used to cook product. During the August 2020 fire at the Topeka facility, the affected line was immediately shut down in accordance with our established safety protocols – as were other lines – and remained down for approximately 10 hours to allow for sanitation and maintenance. We follow all OSHA guidelines and associates are never required to work in dense smoke or fumes following a fire.

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