COUPLED PRODUCTS: From the owners

COLUMBIA CITY — Excitement may center around Drew’s and Johnson’s new-found leadership of Coupled Products LLC, but with the purchase of the business, owners also inherited a picket line.Now into month 20, the amount of workers on strike has decreased from 29 to 21.Although strikers declare unfair labor practices, Drew said Coupled Products has an “excellent workforce in the plant” and “dedicated employees” who will support the company.However, from the picket line, workers are not so supportive.“We are still confused by comments we hear from the union members on the picket line to shut down the plant,” Drew said. “If the plant shuts down, everybody loses and the entire Columbia City community is affected because the jobs are lost forever. The employees’ wages no longer would flow through the local economy. The trickle-down effect of the loss of the jobs would be devastating for the community. The community needs job growth and that is what we provide for nearly 100 workers.”In fact, Coupled Products continues to bring more business to Columbia City. Drew said within the last five years, more equipment, business as well as jobs have moved from Ohio, Michigan and Mexico to Columbia City.For a more in-depth look at this story, see the Jan. 31 issue of The Post and Mail. Don't have a subscription? Call (260) 244-5153 or subscribe to our e-edition. For breaking news, sports updates and additional coverage, bookmark the homepage and find us on facebook.