Thank you for the opportunity to respond to the Oct. 14 editorial [Page 12]. The Landis organization has been a proud member of the plastics industry for 50 years. Unfortunately, your editorial is based on wrong information. We opened a plant in Solvay, N.Y., in the last quarter of 1994. The plant employs about 200 local residents. It was built on the site of a plant whose employees were represented by the United Steelworkers of America. That firm went out of business. Local officials encouraged Landis to build a plant to ease unemployment.
The USW wanted to represent our employees in the spring of 1996. We declined to recognize the USW and asked the National Labor Relations Board to hold an election to determine what the workers wanted. And since then, the USW has refused to allow an election to go forward. Everyone in Solvay knows why: They can't win!
Instead of submitting to an election, the USW has attempted to force recognition by making accusations about working conditions in the plant. All of these accusations are either grossly exaggerated or outright lies. We invite anyone to visit the plant and to speak with the majority of our employees about the working conditions there. Anyone who does that will realize just how false and exaggerated the USW's accusations are.
There have been some serious injuries. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has investigated these injuries and we have fully cooperated with OSHA. OSHA performed comprehensive inspections in the summer of 1995, the winter of 1995 and in February 1996. We adopted every one of OSHA's recommendations.
The Steelworkers caused another OSHA inspection to commence in July 1996. OSHA has yet to notify this company that any conditions were or are substandard. We again retained experts in various safety disciplines to assist us in evaluating our plant.
We respect your publication but object vigorously to any suggestion that our management is ``insensitive.'' Again, we invite you to visit the plant once - judge for yourselves what conditions exist there. Do not regard USW accusations as facts; they are not facts.
The USW is interested only in collecting dues from our employees to replace the dues they cannot collect from employees of the company that went out of business here in Solvay. They are afraid to risk an election because they know that our employees do not believe their accusations. You should not have believed them either!
Gregory J. Landis
Landis Plastics Inc.
Chicago Ridge, Ill.