The “Violated by MABE” have the green light to collect $67 million that the company “stole” from them

After an almost ten-year legal battle, former employees of the household appliance manufacturer MABE, which has been insolvent since 2014, can finally try to reclaim their pension funds and other social benefits. The Supreme Court grants the request for approval of a class action lawsuit.

• Also read: Supreme Court of Canada rules in favor of “MABE infringement”

• Also read: The “Bafoués de MABE” call on Prime Minister François Legault

• Also read: GE Aviation in Bromont is getting going again after setbacks

“This week’s decision authorizes the class action lawsuit. So here we can finally get on with things. With this decision we can finally try to get back our pension fund and the social benefits that the company owes us,” says Daniel Cloutier from the Unifor union, who has been working on this issue for nine years.

“These are our members, we represent the concerns of pensioners and there is no question of letting anyone down. “It will take as long as it takes,” he said.

Michel Morin started working at General Electric (MABE’s parent company) 40 years ago at the age of 18. At the factory on the corner of Dickson and Notre-Dame in Montreal.

“When they announced the closure in 2012, they promised us that we would be paid if we worked professionally until the end, and that they would fill the pension fund deficit and maintain our benefits and our life insurance, and that we would do this until the end would have the end of our lives. But they broke their promise,” complains the man who was the last president of the Montreal Mills Union.

$67 million and 125 deaths later

In total, the workers are demanding $67 million. For around 1,500 employees, including former General Electric retirees who were also affected by the bankruptcy. This amount covers missing pensions, social benefits, life insurance, etc., everything that was negotiated in good faith in the collective agreement and promised by the company.

“125 workers have died since the bankruptcy. Her family was not eligible for the $15,000 life insurance policy. It is sad. “I personally took out $15,000 in life insurance after bankruptcy because I knew we no longer had it and I didn’t want my loved ones to be stuck with bills when I died,” says Michel Morin.

In his case, Michel Morin lost 22% of his 2015 pension fund, or around $600 per month over seven years. “I was 58 when they went bankrupt. In total, they owe me about $75,000 for me alone,” he said.

The retirees and the union accuse MABE of setting up MC Commercial, a separate company, to file for bankruptcy, facilitate the relocation of operations to Mexico and avoid its obligations.

“We know for a fact that this is not a bankruptcy but a cat in disguise. They took advantage of their extensive knowledge of tax laws in Quebec and Canada to disrespect their words,” says Daniel Cloutier. They decided to move their production to Mexico, probably because they were saving money. They could have decided to close the factory in the correct way, respecting workers’ rights, but they chose to do it like a bastard,” he adds.

“Our standards have remained unchanged from the start. The employer is just delaying the inevitable. We are determined to bring this matter to an end. We are also fighting for the heirs of the deceased,” he said.

THE MABE FACTORY IN MONTREAL

1939–45: Canadian Government Tank Factory

1948: General Electric (GE) buys it to make household appliances

1977: Renamed Camco

2008: The factory is sold to the Mexican company MABE in 2008

2011: MC Commercial founded

2012: Announcement of the gradual closure of the plant

2014: MABE Canada closes the factory in August 2014 and files for bankruptcy two weeks later

MABE TODAY

MABE is a Mexican company specializing in the production of household appliances. The company employs 22,000 people and is headquartered in Mexico City. MABE has a joint venture with General Electric’s home appliance division.

Source: Wikipedia

Can you share information about this story?

Write to us or call us directly at 1 800-63SCOOP.


Posted

in

by