Mine workers accept five-year agreement

Fording River employees have voted overwhelmingly to accept a five-year tentative agreement.

Fording River employees have voted overwhelmingly to accept a five-year tentative agreement.

The mine workers voted last week, and 87 per cent chose to accept the agreement, just before the previous contract expired.

Union president Don Takala, who was a member of the bargaining committee that unanimously recommended the package to members, said he was really happy with the number of people that voted, and the agreement that was negotiated by the Local 7884 bargaining committee.

“It was a very successful round of bargaining for both parties. We achieved enough of a package that we could give full recommendation and that helps a lot.

“The bargaining committee got the best package possible for the membership. It includes a wage increase, and a great pension package that was something that we thought was really important. Extended health benefits have also increased from $7,500 to $20,000.

“We could not have achieved this without our bargaining committee. To get 87 per cent in favour is an excellent result and the turn out was also excellent.

“I think we got a great deal and achieved it before the expiry date for the second time in a row. It shows that we have direction, know what we want and go for it.”

The new agreement for the workers at the operation in Elkford covers a five-year term expiring April 30, 2016.