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Lawsuit Targets Collins Aerospace

Collins Aerospace, a Raytheon Technologies Corp. affiliate accused in a federal Lawsuit filed Tuesday of participating in a no-hire agreement that allegedly damaged career and pay opportunities for engineers, has joined a legal fight against Connecticut’s aerospace industry. In December, a similar Lawsuit in U.S. District Court accused Pratt & Whitney, a commercial unit of Waltham, Mass.-based Raytheon, and engineering firms of participating in a so-called no-poach agreement.

Last month, the US Department of Justice charged six aerospace executives on charges of agreeing to a no-poach agreement. The companies for which the accused worked were not named in the indictments. In a separate civil complaint, a former project worker at an East Hartford engineering firm accused Pratt & Whitney and other aircraft companies of imposing a non-hiring agreement to keep salaries low in the field.

Federal officials have also charged a former Pratt & Whitney employee with colluding with suppliers to limit the hiring and recruiting of engineers and other talented professionals. The most recent case was brought by Keller Lenkner, a Chicago law firm, as a “extension of the initial action against Pratt & Whitney and the suppliers” after its investigation revealed evidence that Collins Aerospace was also complicit in the abuses.

Collins Aerospace is based in Charlotte, North Carolina, and produces airline components as well as cockpit and cabin systems. It operates in Connecticut, notably at the former Hamilton Sundstrand factory in Windsor Locks, and employs 68,000 people. Lawyers argue that the no-poach agreement was negotiated and implemented in private among top aerospace officials.

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