CHARLESTON, W.Va.–Thousands of miners convened on Charleston yesterday to protest Patriot Coal Corporation’s bankruptcy.
Patriot Coal has come under scrutiny recently because they are trying to cut its legacy costs by no longer providing benefits to retired union miners. The company is currently undergoing bankruptcy reorganization. The United Mine Workers of America held a rally at the Civic Center, then marched to Patriot Coal’s headquarters located in Laidley Tower.
Delegate Justin Marcum (D-Mingo) met with over 5,000 miners during the UMWA rally in Charleston to talk about miners rights.
“What Patriot Coal is doing to these hard-working West Virginians is just wrong,” Marcum said, “Peabody Energy created this company to fail just so they can save money. If it weren’t for these retired coal miners, Peabody wouldn’t even have the money they do now. It’s time for Peabody Energy and its subsidiaries to take responsibility for what they promised.”
Marcum and fellow Mingo County Delegate Harry Keith White (D-Mingo) were two co-sponsors on House Resolution 28, which called for Patriot Coal to “live up to their obligations to active and retired miners, their families and widows.” The resolution passed the House of Delegates of March 25.
On Monday, the Senate adopted Senate Resolution 50, which says the Senate supports the “commitments made to Patriot Coal Employees.”