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Tue April 10, 2012
As strike continues, Red Cross workers prepare to head back to the bargaining table
Contract talks are set to resume tomorrow between the American Red Cross and its two striking unions.
The strike that started March 30 has greatly slowed blood donations for large parts of Michigan.
The American Red Cross Great Lakes Blood Services Region tries to collect 700 units of blood a day. Since the strike began, they’ve only been able to collect about 100 units a day.
About 200 members of the Office and Professional Employees International Union and the Teamsters went on strike more than a week ago. The union members have been working without a contract for several years.
The unions say the two sides have not been able to resolve safety and collective bargaining issues. The Red Cross contends health care costs are the main sticking point in the unresolved contract.
The strike has affected blood collection in 65 Michigan counties, from Kalamazoo and Lansing to the northern parts of the state.
Red Cross blood drives in southeast Michigan are unaffected.