CONTACT: MELINDA SHELTON, 767; SHELLEY GOLDEN, 761
WHO: NOW President Patricia Ireland and the Rev. Jesse Jackson, acting on behalf of NOW, the National Rainbow Coalition and Operation PUSH
WHAT: will seek a meeting with management at the plant operated by Mitsubishi Motor Manufacturing of America Inc.
WHEN: Wednesday, May 22, at 10 a.m.
WHERE: in Normal, Ill.
WHY: to press for a quick and just resolution of Mitsubishi management's continued mishandling of hundreds of sexual and racial harassment allegations that form the basis of the EEOC lawsuit.
"The Mitsubishi masters of deflection can run but they can't hide from the reality of what's become a mismanagement nightmare. If they won't come to us, we'll just meet them on their own turf and really turn up the heat," said NOW President Patricia Ireland.
Ireland and Jackson requested a meeting with top brass at Mitsubishi, but instead have been referred to Lynn Martin, a management consultant hired last week by Mitsubishi to review their policies and make recommendations.
"Hiring Lynn Martin is a clever ploy, but people are smart enough to recognize yet another public relations smokescreen," Ireland said. "We support the EEOC and the women and men who have risked their lives and jobs to speak out against harassment at the plant, and we're not quitting until management acts responsibly."
Ireland said NOW's national campaign of informational pickets is expanding beyond Mitsubishi dealerships to include dealerships that sell Chrysler products -- specifically the Eagle Talon, Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger -- manufactured at the Normal plant.