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Dear friend:

I'm writing with some great news, and a heartfelt expression of thanks.

The lock-out at the Charles Krug Winery has ended!

The new contract, while far short of the union's goals, is much better than the previous offer. Management capitulated on its demand that current workers take pay cuts. The workers return to their jobs next Wednesday, February 27.

MOST IMPORTANTLY, Krug Winery failed in its blatant strategy to oust the union. At the end of this struggle, the union is still in place, and this struggle has unified and strengthened its members.

The longest lock-out in California labor history, of the Valley's last unionized winery production work force, at Napa Valley's oldest winery, drew 3,186 letters and faxes from Progressive Portal users.

People close to the Krug workers have told us how much your letters meant to the 43 locked-out members of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 186-D. We learned that Krug management was "freaked out" by the outpouring, which reportedly amounted to a six-foot-high pile of letters and faxes.

For a news report about the settlement, see:

If you wish, you may use our letter page to send a note to the owners of Krug Winery expressing your feelings about this lock-out, and your hope that the company will never again resort to such terrible tactics against its workers:

The power of progressive activism has once again been demonstrated. This is the second campaign launched by Progressive Portal since its founding in early 2001, and the second to end in victory. (The first was the drive to regain control of the Pacifica progressive radio network from usurpers who nearly destroyed it.)

I hope you will stick with Progressive Portal as we launch further campaigns for progressive change. We have two new letter campaigns in development now; one will launch in the next couple of days.

Check our home page regularly; new announcements and action alerts are posted there almost daily. (Click "Complete List" so you won't miss any.)

Our efforts are only possible because of the generous support of our users. Won't you consider sponsoring one day of Progressive Portal? It's quite affordable -- $31.25 per month for a year will do it. If we could sign up 365 Day Sponsors, we would be assured the ability to continue bringing you effective, easy opportunities for activism.

Sponsor a day: One-time donations:

Get our occasional action alerts and monthly newsletter -- send a blank email to:

A special congratulations and thank-you to the members of UFCW Local 186-D and their president, Jerry Barlow, and to activist and educator Lauren Coodley, who brought this dispute to our attention and provided much support to our work and other efforts on behalf of the workers. Thanks also to all the Progressive Portal volunteers who helped develop and maintain of this campaign.

And thanks most especially to YOU. Your letter made a difference!

In solidarity and celebration,

Steve Freedkin
Progressive Portal

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