Workers at Pratt & Whitney ratify new deal

    MONTREAL, Dec. 17 /CNW/ - More than 1,400 Pratt & Whitney Canada workers
in Longueuil, Québec, represented by CAW Local 510, overwhelmingly ratified a
new tentative agreement.
    The three-year agreement includes wage and pension increases, layoff
protections, an early retirement window and many other gains. The agreement
was ratified by 89.7 per cent and received a standing ovation from the
    "This is the best collective agreement we have negotiated this year in
the aerospace sector," said CAW Quebec Director Luc Desnoyers. The CAW
bargaining committee was headed up by Desnoyers, CAW President Buzz Hargrove,
CAW Secretary-Treasurer Jim O'Neil and PWC plant chair Camille Larochelle.
    "This is the first time that I've been at the bargaining table where
Pratt & Whitney has made so many demands to scale back workers' gains despite
the fact they are in a better position than they have been in many years,"
said Larochelle. "We are pleased that we were able to hold back these demands
and negotiate the largest pay increase that workers have seen in several
    Since the last collective agreement in 2004, the Longueuil operations
have seen a 22 per cent jump in productivity and have hired nearly 800 new
workers with more new hires expected.
    The current collective agreement expires in February 2008. Both sides
have worked hard to settle the negotiations early since a bitter 20-month long
strike in 1974-5 (then United Aircraft), which helped shape current labour
laws in Quebec.
    During the 74-75 strike, the company continued operations using
replacement workers, prolonging the conflict. After a failed attempt at
mediation, a group of strikers occupied the plant and demanded a settlement to
the strike. The Fédération des Travailleurs et Travailleuses du Québec (Quebec
Federation of Labour) organized a demonstration 100,000 strong outside the
plant which was met with brutal suppression by provincial police.
    The public outcry which followed helped bring in anti-scab laws with the
newly elected Parti-Québécois in 1977.

For further information:

For further information: Camille Larochelle, (514) 726-0543; or CAW
Communications, Shannon Devine, (cell) (416) 302-1699

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Canadian Auto Workers Union (CAW)

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