Rep. Shankland: Joins striking Teamsters 662 workers at Leinenkugel’s

MADISON— Yesterday, Rep. Katrina Shankland (D-Stevens Point) joined striking Leinenkugel’s workers as they fight for decent wages and good benefits. The workers, represented by Teamsters Local 662, have been on strike since July 10, 2023, after rejecting an offer from the Molson Coors Beverage Company that provided minimal wage hikes and no benefit increases.

Following her participation in the strike, Rep. Shankland released the following statement:

“As the ranking member of the Assembly Committee on Workforce Development and Economic Opportunities and Co-Chair of the Legislative Democratic Labor Workgroup, I am proud to stand in solidarity with the striking Leinenkugel’s workers who are simply asking for a fair wage, decent benefits, and a good faith negotiation process. Leinenkugel’s, now owned by the global brewery giant Molson Coors Beverage Company, is an iconic Wisconsin brand, having brewed beer in Chippewa Falls for more than 150 years.

“However, a company is nothing without its dedicated and loyal workforce. The hardworking and skilled Teamsters Local 662 workers keep the brewery running and ensure Leinenkugel’s and Molson Coors’ products live up to their storied reputations. While Molson Coors Beverage Company is raking in record profits, surely, the company can afford to provide its workers with family-supporting wages and benefits. After all, record profits are just unpaid wages. With the company making approximately $10.7 billion in 2022, paying its CEO a $9.1 million salary, and spending hundreds of millions on stock buybacks and shareholder dividends to stuff the pockets of Wall Street elites, where is the support for the workers?

“While on the picket line, one worker said, ‘Three years ago, we were essential, now we’re expendable.’ Another highlighted how powerful it is for 40 workers to stand up to a global beverage giant. With the cost of living on the rise and after years of loyal service, it’s time to put workers first. That’s why I join the striking workers and Teamsters Local 662 in calling on leadership at the Leinenkugel’s Brewing Company and the Molson Coors Beverage Company to do what is right. Negotiate with your workers, treat them fairly throughout the negotiation process, and reach an agreement that puts workers first.”