NEW PHILADELPHIA, Ohio (Jan. 5) — Union workers at Lauren Manufacturing Co.´s New Philadelphia seals and gaskets facility have a new contract with the company four months before the previous agreement was to lapse.
The more than 190 members of United Steelworkers Local 2737-13 overwhelmingly ratified the pact late last month. The contract is effective Jan. 1 through April 30, 2010.
The old agreement was due to expire April 30 of this year, but negotiators for the USW and Lauren began bargaining in fall 2005 to help "ensure continuity" in operations for customers, suppliers and employees, said Cynthia Miller, the company´s director of marketing.
"By resolving a new contract in such a timely manner, it helps return our full focus to serving our customers and stay uninterrupted for the life of the contract," said Lisa Huntsman, Lauren vice president of operations. "It´s a win-win situation."
The new contract is the longest in Lauren´s history, though that wasn´t a paramount goal of the talks, Miller said.