Lockout ends at manufacturing plants in Fulton, Mexico
FULTON - A union representative said Monday the lockout for workers at manufacturing plants in Fulton and Mexico was over.
Lynne Hancock with United Steel Workers Communications said 91 of the 93 employees at AP Green refractories in Fulton and Mexico, met to consider a company proposal Monday morning.
The employees voted to accept the proposal and would return to work Monday evening, Hancock said.
The lockout involved an AP Green brick plant in Fulton and a machine shop in Mexico.
The vote came after a lockout that began Friday morning after a union contract negotiation faltered. Employees' contract agreement with the company expired Thursday. The union said the sticking points of the negotiation were wages, health care costs and retirement benefits.
Employees at the Fulton plant said they were told not to go to work and security guards blocked vehicles from entering the property without clearance.
Friday, HarbisonWalker International (HWI), the company that owns the AP Green plants, released the following statement:
"We began collective bargaining negotiations with the United Steelworkers Union for our manufacturing facility located in Fulton, Missouri, USA in mid-July. Unfortunately the Union rejected the offer, and the contract expired on August 13, 2015. HWI has every intention to reach an agreement quickly and without any disruption to our business operations. We are committed to resuming normal operations at Fulton as soon as an agreement can be reached."