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Rest of MANA union workers laid off: official

Keywords: Tags  Max Aicher North America, USW Local 1005, Rolf Gerstenberger, layoffs, contract negotiations, threaded bar, steel, Michael Cowden

PITTSBURGH — All unionized workers at Max Aicher North America Inc. (MANA) have been laid off, according to a local union official.

About a dozen members of the United Steelworkers union still working at the company were let go shortly before Christmas, said Rolf Gerstenberger, president of USW Local 1005, which represents workers at the Hamilton, Ontario, threaded bar producer, a division of Freilassing, Germany-based Max Aicher GmbH & Co. KG. Only non-union staff continue to work at the facility, he said.

MANA had laid off 30 workers in early November (, Dec. 7), leaving about a dozen workers to perform maintenance.

MANA did not respond to requests for comment about the layoffs or ongoing contract negotiations.

Gerstenberger said there had been "no developments" in talks between the USW and MANA, but the two parties are scheduled to meet with a conciliator on Friday.

The two sides don’t seem close to reaching an agreement, Gerstenberger indicated. "They’re holding out a bunch of things they want, and we’re not too excited about giving them all of them," he said.

MANA inherited the current expired labor contract from Pittsburgh-based U.S. Steel Corp. as it looked to restart the bar mill assets of the former Stelco Inc. (, Nov. 29, 2010). Negotiations on a new contract have been underway since the second quarter of 2012.

Although currently idle, MANA has a production capacity of 300,000 tons per year (, May 9).

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