Polartec workers protest Fenway snowboarding event
Polartec workers and supporters protested Thursday evening at the Big Air at Fenway competition, a freeskiing and snowboarding event sponsored by their employer.
The workers were speaking out against the textile manufacturer’s decision to close its plant in Lawrence, leaving nearly 350 people without jobs, according to the Unite Here New England Joint Board, the union that represents Polartec employees.
Polartec, which makes fleece for apparel sold by Patagonia, L.L. Bean, and North Face, is relocating the work to plants in Hudson, N.H., and Tennessee, and plans to scale down operations in Lawrence over the next few years.
A spokeswoman for Polartec declined to comment on the protest.
Polartec workers have been with the company for an average of 18 years, according to Unite Here, and some have been there as long as 40 years. Workers, many of them immigrants, make $13-$15 an hour, with benefits, the union said.