Several miners block train tracks in protest

Published 3:24 pm Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Several miners from areas spanning from Harlan County all the way into Claiborne County, Tenn. blocked train tracks late into the night Monday.

Blackjewel Mining filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in early July and claimed they would need approximately $6 million to pay their employees.

Just weeks after the employees final paychecks bounced, those miners are trying desperately to get the payment for their hard work.

Miners and their families have joined together in protest and are continuing to camp out on the train tracks near Cumberland in a move to block coal trains from passing.

“Sending support from Big Stone Gap, VA,” Lori Rutherford posted Monday night. “I have an uncle affected by this. Praying you guys get your pay.”

“We deserve what we are owed,” Jess N Rusty Ratliff posted in the group. “I think it is sad that some people can do this to us, but all we can do is continue seeking for work and pray we get compensated for what we have done for the company. All of us in Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia and any other state that has been affected by this.”

As they continue to wait, the protesters are passing the time by playing cornhole on the train tracks, playing music, telling stories and sharing the time together.

If you want to join the group follow them on Facebook at Blackjewel Employees Stand Together.