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LafargeHolcim locks out and illegally replaces workers in Canada

9 November, 2016LafargeHolcim management in British Columbia, Canada, has locked out approximately 70 members of the United Steelworkers, USW Local 816, since 17 October at the Texada Quarrying Ltd. limestone mine.

LafargeHolcim is demanding that seniority be stripped of every employee. USW members are seeking a fair and balanced collective agreement that ensures the dignity and respect of every employee.

The Labour Relations Board of British Columbia has ruled that the company violated labour law by using management contractors to do the work of locked out workers, and it ordered the company to cease and desist.

USW Local 816 is receiving solidarity support from the local community as well as unions throughout British Columbia and across the globe. LafargeHolcim unions from around the world expressed their solidarity for the locked out Canadian workers during the latest meeting of the LafargeHolcim Global Network in France.

IndustriALL director for materials Matthias Hartwich comments,

“We are shocked by LafargeHolcim management’s ongoing violations of workers’ rights and violation of labour law in Canada. The company must immediately end the lockout, end the illegal use of scabs, come back to the table and negotiate in good faith with the USW.”

Unions around the world are organizing a global day of action at LafargeHolcim on 9 December in advance of Human Rights Day in response to LafargeHolcim’s ongoing rights violations in Canada and elsewhere. Since the company merged last year, dozens of workers have died, precarious work has increased, the company has recklessly restructured and management has broken promises to reach a global agreement for a positive relationship with unions.

“The locked out USW members in Canada are not alone,” said Hartwich. “Unions from around the world at LafargeHolcim will send a united, strong message: LafargeHolcim, respect workers’ rights!”