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Lucky Friday miners begin strike

MULLAN, Idaho - Lucky Friday miners with the United Steelworkers local Union 5114 chapter voted to authorize a strike Sunday.

According to USW Local 5114 President Phil Epler, in a post on Facebook, there were 230 votes in favor of the strike, compared to only two votes against it.

The strike began at 5:30am Monday with several miners taking to the picket lines.

The vote to strike happened after Hecla Mining Co., which operates the Lucky Friday mine, announced it was going to partially implement its final offer on Monday.

Prior to Sunday's vote, Epler told union members, "The company is asking us to give up hard won benefits that took generations to acquire. If we choose to strike it has to be in our core beliefs to stay out for as long as it takes. If we choose to work under their offer we may never see what we lost again."

KXLY 4 News will be in Mullan Monday and will continue to cover this developing story.