New UMW president vows to help jobless miners
Washington — Richard Trumka, newly elected United Mine Workers president, says his top priorities will be jobs for the some 40,000 unemployed miners and improving union finances.
Trumka enjoyed a landslide 2-to-1 victory over incumbent UMW president Sam Church, but Church refused to concede the election until he sees the outcome of the Justice Department's investigation into Trumka's qualifications. Church requested an investigation into whether Trumka falsified his elibility to run for a national union office, which requires five years' experience in the mines.
Monitor labor correspondent Ed Townsend writes that the Trumka victory was probably the result of dissatisfaction among miners over the United Mine Workers contract signed in 1981. Church had headed the contract negotiations.