I will condescend for only a moment here. We are discussing business, in the free enterprise system. It is based almost entirely on legal agreements: made between the employer and employee or that employees representative the union. I admit that when difficulties occur people should make it public and may voice their opinions, but remember each party is being held to contract they AGREED TO. Each month you agree to pay a certain amount of rent, or mortgage. if for whatever reason, you fail to perform, you have forfeited that agreement and if that Landlord or Mortgage holder wishes; they may sue you for damages and costs. While a Judge may listen to your reasons, if you cannot correct the forfeiture, you will be found liable, you have failed to honor your contract..
The union has agreed to so much wages for the employee, as that employee has agreed to pay rent or his mortgage. My belief from many years of banking experience is that even a temporary 15% reduction in income is enough for 90% of american workers to default in some payment obligation. The result of such action is injurious to that persons credit, and then his well-being. At no time can the company promise truthfully that even if the worker concedes to work for less, that he will continue to have a job, or be paid. Again the fact that the company went Bankrupt so soon, indicates they were already at the brink. Releasing the employee is the right thing to do, as that employee can get rehired and continue on with his obligations, fairly and legally.
A TEST: Next month attempt to pay 15% less to your Landlord, or bank on your mortgage, see if they take it! I'll wager they will throw it back in your face and demand the rest of it....or else! :yup: The union knows this, and they probably already knew how bad off the company was, so they didn't make a concession. By honoring their contract with their workers, the union isn't financially liable for anything.