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Business owners show support for John Deere employees on strike

Published: Oct. 18, 2021 at 4:53 AM CDT
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WATERLOO, Iowa (KCRG) - Sunday marked four days since John Deere employees walked out of work to join the picket line.

The strike started Thursday after the tractor company and UAW couldn’t reach a contract agreement. The United Auto Workers (UAW) union said it wanted a fair wage for employees, health care, and retirement health care. The Local 238 Teamsters out of Cedar Rapids also joined the fight.

“They need to treat the workers fairly,” said Jesse Case, Local 238. “The workers keep the products moving out of the plant; it’s the workers that keep the money rolling into the corporate coffers.”

The picketers weren’t only feeling the support at the front lines; dozens of businesses across the state added discounts for John Deere employees currently out of a job. That includes Mo’s One More in Washburn, which planned to give employees a 25% discount.

“We have a lot of Deere workers that come in here,” said Danny Nissen, one of the owners. “We need to support them during these trying times.”

Nissen has owned the bar with his wife Mo for over 21-years and has been in the bar business for 40 years. That’s clear back to the last John Deere Strike in 1985.

“There are a lot of similarities, but we just need to continue to support them,” he said. “We have seen a little loss of business this week, but everyone is feeling it.”

Some businesses in the Quad Cities were also extending a helping hand like “The Pub.”

“We felt the need to help out and support them,” said owner Mell Hesse.

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