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The Employer’s Legal Advisor by Thomas M. Hanna

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Digging Deep for Why

Jerry, an African American lathe operator who was a union member, was on strike picketing his employer, a small Midwestern machine shop. One morning, George, the owner, stopped at the picket line on his way in and asked Jerry, “How is everything going?”

“Not so well. I’m quitting,” said Jerry. “I’m only going to be picketing a few more days and then I’m going back to California.” (Jerry had lived in California for many years before returning to his hometown, where the company was located.) George was not unhappy with the news because Jerry was a relatively new employee and a marginal lathe operator by George’s high standards.

When the strike ended, George was surprised to see Jerry return to the plant. George refused to ...

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