Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and its surrounding area thrived as one of the world’s steelmaking meccas for about a century until the 1970s when free trade opened the door to cheaper labor overseas. Fast-forward to the present day and the same scenario seems to be repeating itself. Steel corporations and unions are clashing as a result of cheap Chinese steel and low oil prices which has reignited an old and bitter dispute between organized labor and large corporations. This has resulted in American companies trying to cut costs and increase global competition asking for the most concessions from workers in decades like expensive out-of-pocket insurance costs and longer work hours. “Steel in Distress” is an ongoing photo and video project documenting the economic and social impact of the struggling American steel industry. These images were taken during contract negotiations in 2015-2016 between the United Steelworkers union (USW) and steel corporations like Allegheny Technologies Inc. (ATI) and US Steel corp. Negotiations didn’t go well and as a result there were many protests and even some unions getting locked out from factories across the country so companies could hire cheaper contractors. In Brackenridge, PA, workers from USW 1196 at the ATI Flat Rolling facilities built encampments and large signs around the entire factory to protest their lockout. And in Braddock, PA workers from USW 1219 at the Edgar Thomson Steel Works staged large rallies outside the mill and US Steel offices. Negotiations were settled this past winter with a 3-year contract with less concessions. But emotions are still high as many wait to see what the new presidential administration does for the American steel industry.