TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian Auto Workers said on Friday that it would honor an Ontario Superior Court order to end a 10-day-old blockade of General Motors of Canada’s Oshawa, Ontario, headquarters beginning Monday morning, but warned that the fight was far from over.
The judge allowed the blockade to continue for the weekend, saying the company acted “deceitfully” in announcing the shutdown of its Oshawa truck plant two weeks after signing a new contract with the union, according to a separate report.
“The CAW respects the decision from Judge (David) Salmers and will abide by the terms for picketing near GM headquarters starting Monday,” Peter Kennedy, assistant to the CAW national secretary-treasurer, said in a release.
“We applaud the judge’s acknowledgment that people have the right to peacefully protest unjust decisions such as this.”
The CAW set up the blockade one day after GM said it would shutter the plant in September 2009, along with three other North American plants, after both sides had signed a labor agreement in which GM said it would keep the plant open until 2011.
But the union vowed to keep up the fight.
“We are not giving up on this struggle,” Kennedy said. “We are now planning the next stage of our response to GM’s unjust and unlawful decision to close the Oshawa truck plant.”
He added: “We will look at all options available to us to force GM to live up to the commitments they made in bargaining to keep the plant open.”
The automaker called for a gentler approach to mending fences.
“With this we continue to encourage the CAW to sit down with us to focus on more productive matters and hope this will allow us to discuss potential creative alternatives such as steps to assist impacted employees,” the company said in a release.
The company also suggested that other jobs might be created at another Oshawa plant. “We also wish to work together toward potential new product investments for the Oshawa Car plant,” it said.
Reporting by John McCrank and Scott Anderson; Editing by Gary Hill