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Chicago-Area Garbage Haulers Go on Strike

October 1, 2003

CHICAGO (AP) _ Thousands of trash haulers went on strike Wednesday, disrupting garbage collection in Chicago and surrounding counties.

The garbage haulers walked out just after midnight after negotiators failed to reach an agreement on a new contract that covers roughly 3,300 union members, according to a release from the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

The Chicagoland Refuse Haulers Association, which represents 16 of the largest waste removal companies in the region, declared a lockout and ended negotiations at 2:30 a.m., according to the release.

Refuse Haulers Association spokesman Bill Plunkett had said Tuesday that no contingency plan was in place, because ``it would be logistically impossible″ for the association to continue service using supervisors and hired help.

Teamsters Locals 731 and 301 have 3,300 members working in the city, suburban Cook County, and all or part of six other counties. In the city itself, the strike affected only businesses and apartment houses with five or more units. Single-family homes and small apartment houses are served by the city sanitation department.

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