Security: Kohler strike gets physical on day 2

KOHLER -- The head of Kohler corporate security claims there have been physical confrontations between picketers, police, and security guards, and it's only day two.

Even on a rainy Tuesday, the union's strong show of support was evident, as it was spilling over onto the Kohler driveway.

“When you’ve got a couple hundred people at each gate, it can get out of hand at times," said Tim Tayloe, UAW Local 833 president.


The company's claiming it has gotten out of hand.  A temporary injunction was filed against UAW Local 833 Tuesday.  It claims non-striking employees and business invitees have been prevented from work at Kohler by the picketers, and that the union has obstructed public streets, causing traffic backups for at least two miles. 

Police on Tuesday were also threatening to arrest veteran UAW members, as they were marching on Highway Y.  The veterans complied by moving off the street.

“I hope this goes quick, but you know, I’ll be standing out here for as long as I have to," said Jacob Wine, employee.

Jacob Wine has two kids.  The union's going to give workers like Wine $200 a week if the strike extends beyond eight days.  It's a small token compared with what he and his family need.

“Well $800 rent a month.That’s gonna be paid no matter what. But then that’s gonna take from other things you know, gas, electric, utilities, that comes to roughly $200 a month for all of that," said Wine.

Linda Holentunder hopes the savings she has will sustain her and her children for the time being.

“And when you’re a single mom of kids you know, it hits close to home," said Holentunder.

The strike's not just affecting UAW members. It's also taking a toll on Kohler's office workers.

“With nobody working, because we’re not in there working, they can’t get their job done either," said Holentunder.

But workers say no matter how long it takes, they're committed to getting a fair contract.

We reached out to the Kohler company Tuesday for comment, but our calls were not returned.  Kohler's last proposal went down the drain by a 94 percent "no" vote from the union.  There were no talks Tuesday and there was nothing scheduled for future negotiations.

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