TAR HEEL — Employees of the Smithfield Foods plant began a much-anticipated process of voting on whether or not to unionize on Wednesday. The voting period ended at 7 p.m. Thursday.
Both media and the public were turned away from the plant until the election process had ended. Joyce Fitzpatrick, who was handling public relations for the event, told the Journal on Wednesday morning the company and union officials are not making any statements to the media until the voting period has ended.
“We’re simply trying to comply with the federal court order that is in place,” said Fitzpatrick.
Security guards at the Tar Heel facility were also turning the media away on Wednesday in the company’s attempt to comply with the federal court.
Security guards met visitors to the plant at each access point and explained the situation while offering Fitzpatrick’s contact information to those being denied access.
The results of the vote to unionize the plant will be posted on the Journal’s Web site Friday.