Arizona Copper Miner Strike Case Study

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The Arizona Copper Miner strike of 1983 began on July 1 when negotiations failed between labor unions and the Phelps Dodge Corporation. Shortly after the strike began, Phelps Dodge was granted an injunction restricting Strikers presence on and up to the line. The result of this was the presence of women on the line. These women became the face of the great strike. For purposes of this essay, I will examine the conflict at the root of the strike. I will share the perspective of the women on the line, members of the Morenci Miners Women’s Auxiliary (Citizens for Justice). A secondary party to the conflict, these women stepped up without hesitation for the miners when the miners were unable to do so themselves. For eighteen long months,
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To start, Phelps Dodge Corporation declined the unions reasonable offer in negotiations, even after other mines (owned by other corporations) agreed to such terms. The union members reacted by striking. While the union was still attempting to negotiate a compromise and settlement with Phelps Dodge, operating in good faith, the Corporation suggested they have a cooling down period of ten days. Strikers went home optimistic of the agreement sure to come at the end of the waiting period. Unbeknownst to union members, Phelps Dodge was utilizing this time staffing the mine with replacement workers (Scabs), sneaking them in through another entrance to avoid detection. Strikers were outraged and reacted as such. Therefore, Phelps Dodge Corporation had the miners barred from striking. The response was the women picking up where their men had left off to preserve the line. As previously mentioned, the Morenci Women’s Auxiliary were barred from the line as well. This prompted them to change the name of their group and recruit bodies to enforce the line with an even greater presence then
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