Watch & Donate to Help Us Cover Alabama Coal Miners Strike

Coal miners on the picket line in Brookwood, Alabama (Peter J. Callahan/Payday Report)

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With the fight at Amazon in Alabama winding down for now, another major labor fight is kicking into high gear right up the road, 45-minutes from the Amazon warehouse. In Brookwood, Alabama, 1,100 coal miners of the United Mine Workers of America are entering their second week of a major strike at Warrior Met Coal, a metallurgic coal mine. 

Last week, an overwhelming majority of workers at the coal mine voted down a contract offer, with 95% of the workers voting to continue the strike. 

Many have written off Alabama as anti-union territory, but the strike at Warrior Met Coal, whose workforce is one-third Black, presents an interesting example of the legacy of militant union culture in Northern Alabama. For over a 100 years, mineworkers unions in Northern Alabama have been racially integrating, creating a unique legacy. 

“It’s just a special bond, man,” coal miner Mike Wright told Payday earlier this month. “When you talk to them, and they say, yeah, we’re part of the UMWA, that means something that’s big time. And you just automatically feel that connection. Because this is, like I said, a brotherhood.”

Payday was on the picket line in Brookwood, Alabama earlier this month to cover the strike and we also released a batch of videos with interviews of workers from the picket line. (Watch our videos from the picket line here)

Our 1st Bill Greider Grant recipient, Alexander Richey, who helped us on the Amazon union story, lives in Birmingham and is available to help cover the struggle. However, we need to raise some money to pay him for his work. 

So, please donate so we can continue covering the inspiring strike of over 1,100 coal miners in Northern Alabama at Warrior Met Coal.

Remember, the best way to support us is to sign up as a recurring donor today.

About the Author

Mike Elk
A protege of the late Bill Greider, Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered the labor movement & the drug war in Brasil and spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian. In 2016, he used his $70,000 NLRB settlement from being fired in the union drive at Politico to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. The son of United Electrical Workers (UE) Director of Organization Gene Elk, he lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh. Email: [email protected]

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