Updated: Wednesday, 02 Jun 2010, 12:35 PM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 02 Jun 2010, 5:56 AM EDT
(WTNH) - About a thousand Red Cross workers across the country, including some in Connecticut, are on the picket line today.
A reported 210 phlebotomists, nurses, lab technicians and drivers across Connecticut are striking today. They're joined by 800 more workers nationwide in about six states.
"This is clearly an important action," union spokesman Larry Dorman said, "one we didn't reach easily but one we feel is necessary to protect workers and blood supply."
The workers have been without a contract for more than a year. A few sticking points include cost-sharing for health insurance and the pension plan for new hires.
Red Cross spokeswoman Stephanie Millian told The Hartford Courant it's seeking concessions during great economic difficulty. She says the strikes at six of its 36 regions won't interrupt services.
Blood drives will be canceled today and are scheduled to resume Thursday. The Red Cross and the union are expected to resume negotiations on June 16th.
"The Red Cross is looking forward to upcoming negotiations on the middle of June and we are committed to bargaining in good faith and hopefully making progress toward a contract that's fair for all," spokeswoman Donna Morrissey said.
The union will get together at 11:30 this morning in Farmington to publicize their contract disputes.