WARSAW — For the past few months the Local 105 chapter of the International Union of Operating Engineers has been protesting MacAllister Rentals, a local store which rents a variety of heavy duty machinery from aerial lifters to wheel loader.
According to the local MacAllister Store Manager, Matt Niebur, the company took a vote in November of 2015 against unionizing, and that MacAllister locations throughout the state had been the target of protests ever since.
However, the protesters have begun to branch out. “It’s been a huge distraction yesterday and today, ” said Joel Wihebrink, owner and operator of Wihebrink Landscaping. “They’ve picked a fight with us because we use MacAllister,” he continued.
“It’s a shame they messed with him,” commented Doug Jones, owner and operator of Mastermind Computers and a friend to Wihebrink. “He employs 23 people and tries to use local contractors and this is the thanks he gets,” Jones continued.
Edward Maher, communications director with the Local 150, has spoken previously with Ink Free News on the subject, saying that MacAllister is under investigation by the National Labor Relations Board for two different charges; one saying that MacAllister retaliated against two employees for engaging in a protected activity, and the other saying that MacAllister interfered with the Local 150’s right to strike.