U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer was in Baldwinsville Monday to tour the Anheuser-Busch brewery.
As InBev prepares to take over operations of Anheuser-Busch, the senator urged InBev to continue full operations and maintain full benefits for current Anheuser-Busch plant employees.
The plant plays a critical economic role in Central New York, providing more than 800 jobs to the region. Currently, employees at the Baldwinsville Anheuser-Busch facility and across the country are safeguarded against unaffordable health care premium hikes due to their current contracts in the job. The InBev takeover could threaten these benefits, as well as the jobs of the current employees at the Baldwinsville facility and the 11 other breweries and Anheuser-Busch facilities across the country.
In an effort to protect the jobs, benefits and economy of Central New York and beyond, Sen. Schumer and several other US Senators penned a joint letter to InBev CEO Carlos Brito. The letter seeks to ensure employees at brewing plants across the nation keep their jobs and maintain full health and retirement benefits without unaffordable spikes in premiums.
"There are no two ways about it -- we have to make sure that Anheuser- Busch employees in Upstate New York and beyond keep their jobs and full benefits. The Baldwinsville facility lies at the heart of the local economy and it should stay that way," Schumer said. "I urge InBev to keep its pledge to continue operations at all 12 breweries across the country and to promise to keep affordable health benefits for its employees. The Anheuser-Busch employees are dedicated workers who deserve affordable health care and the benefits they have earned."
InBev and Anheuser-Busch agreed to a $52 billion buyout in June. At the time of the takeover, InBev pledged to maintain operations at all 12 of Anheuser-Busch's brewing facilities across the country but with InBev currently preparing to take over operations, many questions remain unanswered on their plans.