“We cannot allow corporate greed to run roughshod over the people who have exchanged their working lives, and frequently their health, for a promise of a secure retirement,” said UMWA International District 31 Vice President Mike Caputo, who as House Majority Whip was a primary sponsor of the motion. This resolution, “tells these rogue coal companies their abuse of the bankruptcy process to shed contractual obligations to their workers is strongly opposed by the people of the Mountain State.”

“I am very pleased by the action taken in the Legislature,” said UMWA International President Cecil E. Roberts. “It shows that the support for our struggle for justice is growing and broadening.”

Roberts added that Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, Sens. Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin and Rep. Nick Rahall have all sent letters opposing the elimination of health care benefits for the retirees.