LM Sixel

LM Sixel

L.M. Sixel writes about the economy and the workplace for the Houston Chronicle. She started her newspaper career at the Beaumont Enterprise. Before that, she earned a Bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Master's degree in economic history from the London School of Economics.

Steelworkers, Shell to speak Wednesday

On the negotiation front, it’s been a quiet week for striking oil workers and energy executives. After the United Steelworkers union added three more refineries, including the nation’s largest, and one chemical plant to the list of facilities on strike over the past weekend, there was no movement at the bargaining table this week. That […]  More »

Some contractors (unionized) not so bad, Steelworkers say

The leaders of the United Steelworkers union and the North America’s Building Trades Unions issued a joint statement Wednesday to clarify the scope of contractor responsibilities at the nation’s refineries and chemical plants.  More »

Union is striking for safety, Steelworkers’ international head says

Improving health and safety at the nation’s refineries is the reason the United Steelworkers union is on strike, said Leo W. Gerard, international president of the union that has walked out of 15 refineries and chemical plants since launching its strike Feb. 1.  More »

No new talks set between Shell, Steelworkers

In a negotiations update Sunday, Steelworkers officials countered that oil industry negotiators refuse to address “well-documented and widespread safety deficiencies,” and “reject our efforts to reduce excessive overtime.”  More »

Steelworker strike: Talks ongoing as tensions mount on picket line

The Houston Police Department was investigating whether an unidentified off-duty officer who works for another law enforcement agency threatened to shoot picketers early Friday morning, HPD public information officer Jodi Silva said.  More »

LyondellBasell: Strikers, come back to work

The workers, who walked out of the refinery on Feb. 1 as part of a nationwide strike after national oil bargaining talks broke down, have left the refinery scrambling to operate with supervisors.  More »

Strike update: BP training additional replacement workers

The union went on strike against two BP refineries, one in Ohio and another in Indiana, on Feb. 8., a week after the union launched initial walkouts at nine facilities.  More »

Shell, union spar over picket line etiquette

Tensions escalated Friday in the nearly two-week strike after picketers were told to get off the Shell Deer Park Refining property. The order puts the strikers in danger because the refinery fronts the feeder road on Texas 225 and there is no sidewalk on which to stand, said Lee Medley, president of the United Steelworkers Local 13-1. He said Shell gave the strikers walking the picket line 30 minutes to get themselves, their chairs, ice chests and other equipment off the property.  More »

Labor talks to resume Tuesday

The work stoppage at two BP facilities in the Midwest brought the number of plants on strike to 11, after union members walked out of nine facilities, including five in the Houston area, a week earlier.  More »

Steelworkers strike extends to BP plants outside Texas

The United Steelworkers union is broadening its nationwide walkout to include two more refineries. Early Sunday, the union is planning to go on strike against two BP facilities in the Midwest, union spokeswoman Lynne Hancock confirmed. That will bring the total number of plants on strike to 11, after union members walked out of nine facilities, including […]  More »

United Steelworkers rally in downtown Houston after rejecting Shell contract offer

The union representing 5,000 Houston-area workers, went on strike against nine facilities early Sunday morning after its negotiations with Shell broke down.  More »

Steelworkers reject latest contract offer, will stage downtown rally

The offer, which the union received Wednesday night, was the company’s sixth to go across the negotiating table since the two sides have been meeting to hammer out a new labor agreement. The last contract expired Sunday.  More »

Strike negotiators back at the table Tuesday night

Negotiators broke off their talks late Saturday night when negotiations came to an impasse.  More »

United Steelworkers stage downtown Houston protest at LyondellBasell HQ

The strike against LyondellBasell’s refinery in Houston began early Sunday as part of a nationwide effort targeting nine plants nationwide, including five in the Houston area.  More »

Striking refinery workers resume negotiations with Shell

Shortly after midnight Sunday, workers struck at the LyondellBasell refinery in Houston, Marathon Petroleum’s Galveston Bay Refinery in Texas City and Shell Deer Park Refinery.  More »
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