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Talks Fail To Resolve Red Cross Strike In Michigan

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LANSING (WWJ/AP) - A strike by more than 200 American Red Cross workers in Michigan in a dispute related to contract negotiations has hit the two-week mark.

Two days of talks were held this week with no resolution, according to a report by The Lansing State Journal. Some blood drives have been cancelled or rescheduled because of the strike in the American Red Cross Great Lakes Blood Services Region, which covers more than 60 counties.

The strike by staff represented by the Office and Professional Employees International Union Local 459 and Teamsters Local 580 began March 30. It’s the third time the unions have gone on strike in the past two years.

Red Cross spokeswoman Monica Stoneking said health benefits are a key part of the dispute, while the Teamsters union said collective bargaining rights and safety of the blood supply are key issues.

Teamsters Local 580 met Thursday with Red Cross officials, and the Office and Professional Employees International Union Local 459 officials met with them Wednesday. More talks are set for Monday between OPEIU and the Red Cross.

Additional meetings were not yet scheduled with the Teamsters.

TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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