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Published November 02, 2011, 05:44 PM

Locked-out Union Workers Face Uncertain Future

EAST GRAND FORKS, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Locked-out American Crystal Sugar union workers are still on the picket lines, after overwhelmingly rejecting the company's latest contract offer.

EAST GRAND FORKS, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Locked-out American Crystal Sugar union workers are still on the picket lines, after overwhelmingly rejecting the company's latest contract offer.

Many worry about the future and finding other sources of income.

The company addressed what it believes are the union's two main area's of concern, job security and health insurance, but workers say there were many issues left out.

Locked-out union workers wonder how long they may have to camp out.

"You just got to deal with it, you know we have savings we've been able to build up over the years, so you know I've worked here since I was 19 years old this is really the only place I've ever worked." locked-out worker Bruce Schantzen said.

Union leaders did not like the offer that came out of last week's mediation session, but they agreed to let members have their say. And an overwhelming 90 percent of them rejected it in Tuesday's vote.

"Obviously the wages and the benefits are good but there are other places that maybe are comparable." locked-out union worker Jon Conn said.

This is the second time workers have voted on a contract, now many worry about what the future will hold.

"We're thinking of looking for other jobs, it's stressful on families that's for sure," locked-out worker Steve Olson said.

As workers line the road outside a company many have spent decades working at, many still hope they can get back to work with a contract they believe in.

"They want us to come back to work you know but they put little things in there like we'll try to bring all eligible employees back to work after 10 days, who's eligible? To me that says none of us are sure we're going to have a job," Schantzen said.

"If the company doesn't come back to the table then them telling us that they want us back to work really isn't true," Conn said.

Workers say they will picket through out the winter if that's what it takes, and even if they get other jobs, will still picket.

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