MLB players union urges New Era to reconsider closing Derby plant
The union representing Major League Baseball players has come out in support of workers at the New Era Cap Company plant in Derby, which is slated for closure next month.
The union, in a statement issued Thursday, says it stands in solidarity with the plant's more-than 200 workers. It is urging the company to reconsider its decision to shutter the facility and move production to a non-union factory in Florida, saying the decision will cause economic harm to both the workers and their families, as well as the town of Derby.
"It has always been a source of great pride for players to wear the highest-quality, union-made caps produced by the New Era workers in Derby," the statement reads.
New Era has made the official caps for Major League Baseball for decades. In recent days, some players have taken up the cause, including Washington Nationals pitcher Sean Doolittle and Houston Astros pitcher Collin McHugh.
MLB has an exclusive deal with New Era to make our on-field hats in the US. But now New Era is planning to close its factory in NY next month and eliminate 200 union jobs in favor of non-union (cheaper) labor. #NewEraHatsOff pic.twitter.com/V0G4vCLaud— Obi-Sean Kenobi Doolittle (@whatwouldDOOdo) February 18, 2019
When I was in the minor leagues, My wife and I lived with a woman whose family worked in that factory since it’s inception. She showed me hats from the early years of New Era MLB, and was so proud of her connection to the game. I stand with the workers in Derby, NY #NewEraHatsOff https://t.co/RRmIQNvamg— Collin McHugh (@Collin_McHugh) February 18, 2019
Last week, New Era announced it has agreed to a severance package for the plant's workers, who will receive one week of salary for every year of service, up to 26 weeks, along with a health insurance contribution for five months after the plant closes.