PLANT

Valve-maker Velan locks out 400 Montreal workers

Employees overwhelming vote against labour agreement that would have boosted wages over three years.


MONTREAL — Industrial valve-maker Velan Inc. has locked out about 400 unionized employees at three Montreal plants where a tentative collective agreement was rejected.

The company says it acted because the union launched pressure tactics such as work slowdowns and other disruptions that it said posed health and safety concerns.

Velan says it was surprised by the 78% vote against a new labour agreement that provided 2.5% wage increases for three years.

Workers in Granby, Que., which has about 100 employees, voted 90% in favour of the agreement.

The union says certain parts of the agreements that gave the company additional labour flexibility were different at the Granby and Montreal locations.

Velan employs more than 2,000 people at manufacturing plants in 11 countries.

© 2015 The Canadian Press

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