Bombardier Cuts Deal Major Blow to Unionized Workforce in Toronto



    TORONTO, April 2 /CNW/ - The announced job cuts at Bombardier's Downsview
facility in the north-end of Toronto will deal a heavy blow to the unionized
workforce in the plant, said CAW President Ken Lewenza.
    At a meeting held earlier today, the company informed the union that of
the 475 jobs expected to be cut, 420 of those will impact the plant's
unionized workforce, Lewenza said. Unionized workers at Bombardier's Downsview
facility are represented by CAW Local 112 (production and skilled trades) and
Local 673 (office and technical). All of the job cuts are expected to be made
before the end of this year.
    "This is devastating news for our members and for the community of
Downsview," Lewenza said. "As always, our union will work diligently to
minimize the pain on our members by exploring various incentives and
retirement package options to protect the jobs of our more vulnerable, junior
members."
    Bombardier announced today it will cut 10 per cent of its global
aerospace workforce, or about 3,000 workers at locations in Mexico, Northern
Ireland, the United States as well at its Downsview facility. CAW Director of
Aerospace Dawn Cartwright said the company cited the current global economic
crisis and subsequent drop in business jet sales as the primary reason for the
layoffs. Bombardier's Downsview facility produces the company's Global Express
business jet and Q400 TurboProp. The facility also produces the Q200 and Q300
series aircraft, which is set to cease production in June of this year.
    Despite the devastating news, today's layoff announcement should send a
loud message to the federal government to ensure that the over $3 billion in
public funds earmarked for new DND fixed-wing search and rescue aircraft is
spent in Canada to protect Canadian aerospace jobs, said CAW Local 112
President Roland Kiehne.
    "We've been hollering at the federal government for years, demanding they
reinvest public funds back into the Canadian economy to protect workers from
economic downturns, just as we're seeing today," Kiehne said. "Now, more than
ever, we need the government to show support for our domestic aerospace
industry, and help save jobs at our Bombardier plant."
    The CAW and Bombardier are in the early stages of collective bargaining
negotiations, with the existing contract set to expire in June. CAW Local 673
President Maria Pinto said retirement packages and severance incentives will
undoubtedly be a major issue at the bargaining table.






For further information:

For further information: Dawn Cartwright, CAW Director of Aerospace,
(416) 917-7220; Roland Kiehne, CAW Local 112 President, (416) 801-1120; or
Angelo DiCaro, CAW Communications, (416) 606-6311

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Canadian Auto Workers Union (CAW)

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