The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

February 13, 2013

More protests planned over Patriot bankruptcy case


From The Associated Press

ST. LOUIS — Union-backed coal miners are planning more St. Louis protests of a coal company’s bankruptcy proceedings they say jeopardizes pension and health care benefits for some 20,000 retirees and dependents.

Picketing was planned for Wednesday morning by the United Mine Workers of America outside the headquarters of Peabody Energy. That’s one of the companies the union accuses of orchestrating business deals that bankrupted Patriot Coal.

The union says most of the 20,000 people whose benefits may be affected by Patriot’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy are largely in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia.

Peabody, which spun off Patriot in 2007, has said it has “lived up to its obligations and continues to do so,” and that the dispute is solely between the union and Patriot.