A joint statement was just issued by Smithfield Foods and the union: They've worked out "a fair election process." (Here's an update.)
For Immediate Release
October 27, 2008
Joint statement of Smithfield and UFCW
The parties have reached a settlement of the lawsuit pending in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Richmond Division. The essential elements of the settlement are as follows:
1. Smithfield and the UFCW have agreed on what both parties believe to be a fair election process by which the employees at Smithfields Tar Heel plant can choose whether or not to be represented by the UFCW.
2. Smithfield and the UFCW have agreed to establish a Feed the Hungry Program to be jointly funded and administered by the UFCW and Smithfield.
3. The UFCW agrees to end its public campaign against Smithfield.
4. The parties have agreed there shall be no further public statement about this settlement until the election referenced in paragraph one above has been concluded.