Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

April 1, 2013

UMWA organizes large Patriot Coal protest in W.Va.

Associated Press

CHARLESTON — Thousands of people are protesting Patriot Coal Corp.’s bankruptcy reorganization plan in downtown Charleston.

The protesters gathered at the Charleston Civic Center for a rally organized by the United Mine Workers of America. They heard from speakers including Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin before walking a short distance to protest outside Patriot Coal’s West Virginia offices at Laidley Tower.

Last week, the House of Delegates called for bankrupt Patriot Coal to honor its pension and benefit commitments to some 23,000 retired miners and their dependents.

St. Louis-based Patriot is trying shed some of that $1.6 billion liability as it restructures. Patriot contends the move is needed to save 4,000 existing jobs.