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ATI workers in Lockport prepare for lockout

Forty-four unionized workers at Allegheny Technologies Inc.’s plant in Lockport were bracing for a possible lockout at the end of Tuesday.

They are among 2,300 United Steelworkers of America-represented employees, spread across ATI plants in four states, whose labor contract was set to expire at midnight. Pittsburgh-based ATI makes specialty metals and components. Its Lockport plant is on Ohio Street.

Talks between the company and the union continued on Tuesday. “But they’re so far apart, I can’t see an agreement [before the contract expires],” said Michael Henderson, a representative of Steelworkers Local 9436.

Steelworkers members say they believe the company will lock them out at midnight and bring in replacement workers. Dan Greenfield, an ATI spokesman, declined to comment about the possibility of a lockout or using replacements.

Henderson said the company wants contract changes including taking away workers’ guaranteed 40-hour work week, ending their 10-minute breaks, and using 12-hour shifts but not paying them for overtime.

“They are pretty much refusing to bargain in good faith,” said Henderson, who has worked at the plant for 21 years. “The union understands the company is having financial problems and we’re willing to work with them, but they don’t want to include us in any solutions.”

ATI reported a $10 million profit in its first quarter, which ended March 31, compared to an $18 million loss in the same quarter the year before. ATI reported a $2.6 million net loss for 2014.

email: mglynn@buffnews.com