Strong Strike Mandate by CAW Members at Continental AG in Chatham, Ontario

November 11, 2011, 2:45 PM EST

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CAW Local 35 members who work at an automotive research and development company in Chatham, Ontario have voted 100 per cent in favour of a strike, if necessary.

The CAW represents approximately 35 workers at Continental AG. With contract talks stalled and a strike deadline approaching at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, the workers voted in favour of a strike, if needed, at a meeting on November 10.

CAW National Representative Richard Laverty said the employer has tabled numerous concessions including pension rollbacks for new hires, no post-retirement benefits for new hires and other demands. In addition there are wage, defined benefit pension and other benefit issues remaining on the table.

He said the company is pushing to create two tiers of employees, but the bargaining committee and membership are adamantly opposed.

"Three years ago this membership made significant moves to help the employer through a difficult period as a result of the recession," Laverty said. "These members are now not only entitled to protect what they have, but to also build for the future. In addition, they are determined to protect the rights of new hires," he said.

"These workers are simply looking for a fair settlement with this profitable multi-national corporation," Laverty said.

Laverty said there are currently no talks planned over the weekend.

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