Renfrew, Ontario - About 400 workers at Haley Industries Ltd. begin returning to work today after negotiating a new collective agreement and resolving a five-week strike.
"This was tough bargaining, but in the end we were able to obtain a fair collective agreement," said Mike Byers, President of United Steelworkers (USW) Local 4820. "By sticking together and supporting our union, our members have achieved solid improvements in working conditions."
The workers set up picket lines April 3 after rejecting a sub-standard company offer that included an hourly wage increase of only 15 cents over three years.
The new, three-year collective agreement, ratified by union members on Wednesday, will provide workers with a total wage increase of 82 cents an hour.
Other gains in the new contract include a new long-term-disability plan, improved health-care benefits and conversion of the former pension plan to the Steelworkers Pension Plan. The Steelworkers Pension Plan is a multi-employer, union-administered plan that will provide a greater pension for workers and more financial stability for the employer.
The new agreement was negotiated with the assistance of provincial mediator Tony Harte.
The Haley Industries workers produce magnesium and aluminum castings for the aerospace industry. The Steelworkers union has represented workers at the plant for 60 years.
The historic plant originally was set up with support from the federal government to help develop Canada's aerospace industry. In the 1950s the plant was one of the suppliers to the Avro Arrow project.
The plant, which has been modernized over the years, is now owned by Magellan Aerospace.
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Contact: David Lipton, USW Staff Representative, 613-260-7205, ext. 232, email@example.com.