November 14, 2006
CAW members ratify agreement at seat manufacturing plant
Kitchener, Ontario – Members of the Canadian Auto Workers Union (CAW) who work at the Lear automotive parts plant in Kitchener, Ontario have ratified a new collective agreement that resists concession demands and positions the plant for new work. Production workers voted 75 per cent in favour of a one-year extension to the current agreement, followed by a new three-year agreement, while skilled trades voted 86 per cent in support.
CAW National Executive Board member Jim Woods said the new agreement ensures productivity and quality improvements through work rule changes. “We’ve found ways to make the plant more productive, while resisting wage, benefit and pension concessions,” Woods says. “This was a tough round of bargaining in which the solidarity of the membership was critical to reaching a new agreement.”
The agreement provides enhanced early retiree buyouts, and a commitment that new work will come to Kitchener. The company has guaranteed no plant closure during the life of the deal, and if the workforce falls below 260 people, the company must enhance the severance package. The CAW represents 754 members at the plant, which stamps and welds automotive seat frames and adjusters.