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Minn. congress members urge American Crystal and union to reach agreement

U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken and Representatives Collin Peterson and Tim Walz suggest it is time to bring in a “new high-level mediator” to help Moorhead-based American Crystal Sugar and union workers reach a deal. The four DFL members of Congress sent a letter to leaders on both sides of the yearlong labor dispute on Thursday.
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U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken and Representatives Collin Peterson and Tim Walz suggest it is time to bring in a “new high-level mediator” to help Moorhead-based American Crystal Sugar and union workers reach a deal. The four DFL members of Congress sent a letter to leaders on both sides of the yearlong labor dispute on Thursday.

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Crystal Sugar workers pressure board members

Union members are demonstrating at the homes of American Crystal Sugar's directors as the labor dispute drags on. An AFL-CIO spokesman tells the Fargo Forum the demonstrations will continue indefinitely. Roughly 1,300 workers have been locked out from plants in Minnesota, North Dakota and Iowa for more than a year.

American Crystal, workers to restart talks

American Crystal Sugar and its locked out union workers were scheduled to meet again Friday in an effort to restart contract talks. The company locked out 1,300 workers at five factories last August. This is the fourth time the two sides have met with a federal mediator to try to end the impasse.

American Crystal union, execs, farmers join in prayer as church tries to bring sides together

Both sides in a long and bitter labor dispute came together for prayer, hymns and scripture during an emotional ceremony at a Grand Forks church. "It certainly can’t hurt to have the Lord involved," said a sugar beet farmer who attended.

Locked-out union workers agree to sit down with American Crystal Sugar

For the first time since February, talks to end a 9-month contract dispute are scheduled to resume on June 8. About 1,300 workers at Crystal plants in Minnesota, North Dakota and Iowa have been locked out since August.

American Crystal Sugar rejects union proposal as "publicity stunt"

American Crystal says the latest proposal from its workers includes none of the company's suggestions for ending the lockout that is approaching six months. Meanwhile, the company has posted help wanted ads for what it describes as "long-term temporary" workers.

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Talks are set to resume Friday between American Crystal Sugar Co. and 1,300 locked-out union workers. It's been more than four months since the two sides last met. Union spokesman John Riskey told the Associated Press he hopes the company will "cooperate and negotiate." Company spokesman Brian Ingulsrud says the company's last contract offer stands.

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The chief executive says he thinks the parties will eventually reach a settlement that gets locked-out workers back on the job. “Bruises take awhile to get healed, but we’ll get over it,” said David Berg. The workers, meanwhile, want the company to explain why they were locked out in the first place.

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Contract talks between American Crystal Sugar's leaders and union representatives once again ended Friday with no resolution. The meeting marked the fourth time the parties have tried to resolve their dispute with a federal mediator. More than 1,300 union workers have been locked-out of plants in Minnesota, North Dakota and Iowa for the past 10 months.