Workers at Jeld-Wen's Australian subsidiaries Corinthian Doors, William Russell Doors and Stegbar end strike Sept. 29 with no resolution on wages, work conditions
October 11, 2011
– Workers at Jeld-Wen’s Australian door and window manufacturing subsidiaries Corinthian Doors, William Russell Doors and Stegbar ended a strike on Sept. 29 and returned to work following a recommendation by the Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU), the World Socialist Web Site reported Oct. 10.
The 15-day strike was ended even though the several hundred workers in four states and their union have not yet reach a deal on wages or working conditions with the transnational company.
The CFMEU, headquartered inWest Melbourne, Victoria, said the end of the strike would allow for negotiations to begin with top company officials on a new three-year agreement. Following Onex’s US$871 million purchase of a 58% ownership stake in Jeld-Wen, as reported by Industry Intelligence on Oct. 4, 2011, Onex’s building products industrial partner Philip Orsino has become Jeld-Wen's president and will take part in these negotiations, according to the article.
Phil Davies, an official at CFMEU, said the latest Jeld-Wen offer would further decrease pay for a third of all job positions. The offer also remains firm that an attendance bonus should be abolished while wages should be raised by only 2.5% to 2.9% per year.
Citing a real pay cut enforced in 2008, workers at Corinthian Doors expressed concern that their decision to end the strike might lead to an agreement that would benefit the company more than it would the employees.
The United Steelworkers (USW) union on Oct. 4 issued a statement denouncing what it described as the "anti-worker tactics of Jeld-Wen subsidiaries in Australia."
USW members distributed leaflets about the Australian situation to participants at the Greenbuild 2011 International Conference at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, where Jeld-Wen was a corporate exhibitor.
The primary source of this article is the World Socialist Web Site, Oak Park, Michigan, on Oct. 10, 2011.