Strike at Navy shipbuilder Bath Iron Works enters 2nd week

BATH, Maine (AP) — A strike by shipbuilders against Maine's Bath Iron Works entered a second week Monday with no talks between the company and the union.

About 4,300 shipbuilders from Machinists Union Local S6 are on strike in a contract dispute that focuses on subcontractors, work rules and seniority. The union is less concerned about wages and benefits.

A Machinists spokesman said Monday the company's offer last week to resume negotiations was disingenuous because the company agreed to discuss only select parts of the contract — but not the areas that are of concern to the striking shipbuilders.

The Machinists union announced Monday that they have written to the CEO of the shipyard's parent company, General Dynamics, and to President Donald Trump, seeking support. Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden previously issued a statement in support of the shipbuilders.

The strike began on June 22 against a backdrop of high unemployment and health fears during the global coronavirus pandemic.

The last strike, in 2000, lasted 55 days.

Bath Iron Works is one of the Navy’s five largest shipbuilders and a major employer in Maine, with 6,800 workers