Caterpillar lockout a sign of Harper’s time: Romeo Saganash

Posted on 14th January, by Romeo in News. Comments Off

Conservatives’ corporate culture benefitting profitable companies but costs Canadians too much

LONDON – Three years ago, Stephen Harper bragged about giving a $5 million federal tax break to US manufacturing giant Caterpillar. This New Years Day, the company’s subsidiary locked out 400 employees in London, demanding that they accept over 50 per cent in wage cuts and other benefits. The future of the plant is now in question.

Where is Prime Minister Stephen Harper, now that he is needed?

According to New Democrat leadership candidate Romeo Saganash, “The Harper Government likes to talk about families, about safety, about support for communities. But here we have people in real danger, families threatened, a community in crisis. But the Harper Government isn’t in Ottawa for the people. Instead, it’s business as usual.

“Whether it’s the housing crisis in Attawapiskat or the lockout in Alma – or struggling communities anywhere in Canada – it’s clear that these Conservatives do not share our values. New Democrats know that people matter. We want to see a country that works together, not one where we are pitted against each other.”

Romeo Saganash will be in London, Ontario on Saturday, January 14 at 10 am. Joined by London-Fanshawe NDP MP Irene Mathyssen, he will walk shoulder-to-shoulder on the picket lines with the locked out working people of Electro-Motive Diesel, a subsidiary of Caterpillar. The NDP stands with Londoners, asking this profitable global corporation to return in good faith to the bargaining table – the same company that Stephen Harper once used as an emblem for his policies.

  • Caterpillar’s Inc.’s worldwide third-quarter profits grew by 44% over last year, coming in at $1.14 billion.
  • The company has seen similar growth in sales and orders, and expects sales for the year of $58 billion, and projects further growth in the coming year.
  • Electro-Motive Diesel’s last offer to employees would cut wages by more than half, from $35 to $16.50, as well as slashing pensions and benefits.
  • 780 Rio Tinto Alcan workers in Alma have been locked out of their plant since December 31, 2011.
  • Attawapiskat declared a state of emergency due to substandard housing in October, 2011.

Please contact Cam Holmstrom, 613-292-8109 for more information, or to set up an interview with Mr. Saganash.

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