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ATI workers ratify 4-year contract, heralding end of 6-month lockout

Unionized workers at Allegheny Technologies approved a four-year contract that would end a lockout imposed by the company more than six months ago.

The deal covers about 2,200 workers at 12 facilities in six states, including a plant in Lockport with about 40 workers. Workers approved the deal by a 5-1 ratio, according to the union.

The National Labor Relations Board still needs to approve the agreement; the NLRB last month filed charges of unfair labor practices against the manufacturer. Wayne Ranick, a United Steelworkers spokesman, said the union hoped that NLRB approval would come in “a few days.” The union needs to file a request with the NLRB to withdraw the charges, to set the process in motion.

“The strength and solidarity of our union paid off with a fair contract that contains virtually none of the drastic concessions ATI sought to arbitrarily impose,” United Steelworkers International President Leo W. Gerard said in a statement.

Daniel L. Greenfield, an ATI spokesman, said the company was “pleased that the agreement was ratified.” As to when employees would return to work, Greenfield said that was subject to the NLRB approving the union’s request to “withdraw its pending charges and the outstanding complaint.”

ATI and the United Steelworkers reached a tentative deal on Feb. 22. ATI, a Pittsburgh-based maker of specialty metals and components, began the lockout Aug. 15.