Goodbye Stelco (U.S.Steel)---Hamilton and Nanticoke


March 03, 2009



U.S. Steel Canada is completely shutting down its Hamilton plant and will close most of its Lake Erie operations, the Spectator has learned.

The move is believed to be temporary and driven by slumping demand in the steel sector.

Union leaders say they were notified of the plan by company officials at about 3 p.m.

"It's devastating for the community," said Bill Ferguson, leader of the United Steelworkers union in Lake Erie. "For the local people this will be quite a blow. This plant, Lake Erie, has never shut down in its history."

The move could affect 2,100 workers although the precise total is not yet known.

The company has already laid off close to 700 of its 1,700 hourly workers in Hamilton, where it shut down its blast furnace in November.

The remaining operations at the plant, including its steel finishing lines and coke ovens, will now be closed as well, said Rolf Gerstenberger, president of the United Steelworkers union at the plant.

All operations at Lake Erie Works, except for the coke ovens, will also close.

"The only information I have is that this plant will close down due to a lack of orders," Ferguson said.

Pittsburgh-based U.S. Steel would not comment on the closures.

Check back with for updates of this story

That's what we get for selling all of our manufacturing to the US and moving the rest of it to Asia.

Can't blame American companies for moving their production to their own country in times like this. Maybe they can crumble a little more and we can buy our sh... back.

I feel for all the families affected by this...

That is probably the worst news I've heard in a very long time. That is absolutely awful.

The ripple effect through the service sector is large, on top of loss the direct jobs at the two Stelco plants..

The scary part is that U.S. steel can still supply all their customers through their U.S operations.

I can't see U.S. steel bringing "Stelco" back on-line with all the focus on job creation in the States. They will be pressured to keep all the jobs in the U.S. now and will probably get ~Obama Points~ if they do so.

Additionally, Haldimand County, where Nanticoke is, has already been devasted with a shutdown of most development. This will be a massive blow to Haldimand's economy also.

This is devastating news.

Just released by U.S. Steel

Press Releases

U. S. Steel Further Consolidates Operations for Greater Efficiency

PITTSBURGH, March 3 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- United States Steel Corporation announced today that further consolidation is necessary to maximize efficiency while meeting customer demands. Operations to be temporarily idled over the next several weeks are the finishing and coking operations at Hamilton Works in Hamilton, Ontario, and the steelmaking and finishing operations at Lake Erie Works near Nanticoke, Ontario. Coking operations at Lake Erie Works will continue production. Approximately 1,500 employees will be affected. Earlier today, U. S. Steel representatives met with federal and provincial officials as well as representatives of the United Steelworkers at these facilities to notify them of the temporary idling.

U. S. Steel plans to continue to temporarily concentrate production at Mon Valley Works near Pittsburgh, Pa.; Gary Works in Gary, Ind.; and Fairfield Works near Birmingham, Ala.

"The difficult decision to continue to temporarily consolidate our production, we believe, is a necessary response to current market conditions," said U. S. Steel Chairman and CEO John Surma.

This release contains forward-looking statements with respect to market conditions and proposed operating practices. U. S. Steel has been, and we expect will continue to be, negatively impacted by the current global credit and economic problems. In accordance with "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, cautionary statements identifying important factors, but not necessarily all factors, that could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements have been included in the Form 10-K of U. S. Steel for the year ended December 31, 2008, and in subsequent filings for U. S. Steel.

For more information about U. S. Steel, visit

SOURCE: United States Steel Corporation

Web site:

Even if this is true.

The move is believed to be temporary and driven by slumping demand in the steel sector.
I know it is similar to comparing apples to oranges but, Dofasco's orders are picking up.

Yup, have to agree that this is what happens when we sellout.
By no means am I an economics major, but a country with the vast natural resources and such an educated population, you'd think could be pretty close to self sufficient.

Instead, we rely on the well-being of rich guys in other countries. When they suffer -- due to circumstances removed -- we're the one's left holding the bag.
Pretty funny how idiotic loan and mortgage advancements in the U.S can cause such damage other countries.

Boy, this whole globalization thing has really worked out for the everyday joe. Funnier still is how the same administrations/ organizations who've either championed this, or mandated it, are the first to recoil back into their shells when the going gets tough.

But again, many parable have been written about selling your soul to the devil.

Sad news. Life goes on.

Rule number one: life isn't fair.

Rule number two: look out for yourself.

Rule number three: nothing else matters.

To blame the U.S. economy, administration, NAFTA or any other external factor for losing jobs is petty. We are all accountable to ourselves and our families. The company we work for owes us nothing. It isn't the company's responsibility to provide for the individual or their family - it's ours.

Choosing to remain stagnant in one's personal competitiveness is a choice made by near sightedness or sloth. It is each person's responsibility to remain viable to the employer. Some get lucky and put their thirty years in with no interuptions, get a fat pension, and retire. Most others can't afford such a gamble.

It's no coincidence that tough economic times raise sales of the book 'Atlas Shrugged'. If people have down time maybe a read through it would be beneficial.

Say good Bye to Hamilton as we know it
It Could be a Ghost town if this is too long a Shutdown.

Why are Dofasco's orders picking up? Because it's non-union therefore lower costs? Not good.

Mac employs more people than Stelco.

Economies change, adapt, evolve.

I'm not aware of the human born to work steel only.

8) We all love Mr. Obama and the Americans all of all sudden , don't we ????? :roll:
   So stop complaining  !!!

This has been one of the main arguments against globalization the past ten years: economies are so interdependent, when one falls, we all fall !

Until people feel secure enough to buy again, the economy will remain slow. (The only ones making money these days are the economist talking heads on the news programs)

Dofasco's rolled steel and tin products are more in demand in non-automotive sectors, whereas US Steel depends more on the car market.

Gloablization? This isn't about China, Sri Lanka, or Iceland. This issue is about our top trading partner. We don't send steel to Turkey.

Ayn Rand??? Give me a break!

Non-union doesn't mean lower costs. Dofasco has traditionally taken what Stelco has paid during union negotiations and given their people a little bit more.

Toyota offers people more money than Stelco. They are in trouble too.

I really wish people wouldn't just slag unions like this. It is actually embarassing.

My father has 40 years at Stelco and I have 2 uncles with 30 plus years each as well. How do you think I feel right now? My dad is lucky that he could retire but I feel really bad for everyone involved.

I am not here to discuss unions or non-union places of business. It doesn't matter. The fact is, a company has shut its doors down and 1500 - 2100 people are out of jobs now.

IMHO I think the problem is Obama and the pro America bill. US Steel is scared that they won't be able to produce steel in Canada and ship to the US. It was great for them when the dollar was great but with this bill passing in the near future, they probably got scared.

We should be supporting everyone affected by this closing plus all the other layoffs that have taken place in this city. Blue collar, hard working people have made this city. This is what our city is built on.

I too am of the opinion that our city is going to be a ghost town in the next 15-20 years because there won't be any jobs left. Everyone living here will be commuting.

It's a sad day for Hamilton. I personally never thought this day would come. Stelco is a local institution with a long and proud history. Where do we go from here? I just don't know.

One of the manufacturers I represent purchases steel 200k to 750k at a time depending on market price and from what I've been told this afternoon they will continue to source it in Canada.

Unions that's all I've got to say.

I have 2 uncles (1 retired/ took the severance package, the other just laid off) that were formerly emplyed by U.S. Steel/ Stelco

They tell me stories about sleeping during their shifts, how they got to come and go as they pleased as long as someone would "cover" for them. The wages they were making, all of this played a role in the fall of the company. The might not seem like much but when 3/4 of the people working are doing it then it makes a difference.

Ask any old employee of Stelco about the free rides they got for years it's unbelievable.

What we need to do is push for human rights in these countries that have none. If I ran a company and they told me that I can either pay my employees $25-30 an hour, plus benefits, and pay all the corporate taxes in this country OR I can pay some little chinaman 25 Cents a day with no benefits which puts millions more dollars into MY pocket geez let me think about that for a second I'm shipping my base of operations to Beijing, until workers in these countries have their rights and wages increased this trash will keep on happening.

Enjoy your American capitalism people because it's bringing us all down what we need is a socialist/ capitalist system pure capitalism/ totally free market will eventually fail when the top 1% of the country gets richer and the bottom 99% are losing their houses can't afford education for their children, can barely pay bills and put food on their families tables it brings the entire moral of society down.

I see no bright future for North America, what do we have that's going to bring more jobs here there's nothing, the auto sector is all but gone, the manufacturing sector drained, we're lucky to live in a city that employs so many in the health care system but without that in Hamilton we would be a ghost town. I've been laid off for 3 months now and it's unbelievably hard to find a job right now so to all the guys from U.S. Steel who just jumped on the E.I. train with me try not to stay too long because the track breaks off ahead and it's a mighty steep drop my friends.