Speaking of Thatcher’s unemployment strategy:
The Wall Street Journal has the scoop on Caterpillar, Inc. locking out union workers in Ontario, and even the conservative rag admits that the company’s behavior toward the workforce comes “despite a big recovery in earnings over the past two years.”
Caterpillar Inc. said Sunday it had locked union workers out of a train locomotive plant in London, Ontario, in a sign that the world’s largest maker of construction and mining equipment is prepared to get tough with workers despite a big recovery in earnings over the past two years.
Caterpillar said in a statement that workers would be barred from the Electro-Motive Canada plant until “a ratified contract is in place” for the workers, represented by the Canadian Auto Workers union. The most recent contract expired at the end of 2011, and the two sides have been unable to come to terms.
Caterpillar’s Electro-Motive Canada plant was acquired in 2010 as part of the $820 million purchase of Electro-Motive Diesel Inc., based in LaGrange, Ill.
Union officials said Caterpillar’s latest proposal would halve wages and reduce benefits. Tim Carrie, president of the union’s local branch, said the cut would mean hourly pay of $16.50 for most workers, down from $34.