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Cleveland-Cliffs, United Steelworkers reach tentative labor agreement

The contract, once ratified, would cover about 2,000 employees in northern Minnesota and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

UTac pic
Steam rises out of the stacks at United Taconite in Forbes.
Duluth News Tribune / file
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CLEVELAND — A tentative labor contract agreement has been made between Cleveland-Cliffs and the United Steelworkers, Cleveland-Cliffs announced Friday morning.

The 47-month labor contract will go into effect Oct. 1 and will cover approximately 2,000 USW-represented employees in four local unions at mining and pelletizing locations in northern Minnesota and Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

The tentative agreement improves current wages, bolsters existing health insurance provisions for workers and retirees without increasing costs, and includes a commitment for Cliffs to reinvest in the USW-represented facilities over its term, according to a news release from USW.

“The proposed agreement provides important economic and contract language improvements that will improve working conditions along with the standard of living for USW members and their families,” said Emil Ramirez, director of USW District 11 and chair of negotiations. “Steelworkers will be safer at work and their jobs and benefits more secure under the tentative agreement. Cliffs has committed to a plan to invest in its USW facilities that will enable future generations of USW members to support their families and sustain their communities.”

A tentative agreement was also reached in late August for USW members at steelmaking operations and the Minorca Mine near Virginia.


Agreements are now pending ratification by USW local union memberships.

“Reaching a second labor agreement in less than two weeks reaffirms our great alliance with the USW," said Lourenco Goncalves, chairman, president and CEO of Cleveland-Cliffs. "It also confirms one more time that we know very well our responsibilities as the supplier of choice to clients in critical sectors, such as military and automotive."

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