Finning strike is over after five weeks

Striking Finning workers in Sparwood headed back to work last week after agreeing to a new contract.

  • Aug. 12, 2011 11:00 a.m.

Striking Finning workers in Sparwood headed back to work last week after agreeing to a new contract.

Members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers have been off work for five weeks, pressing for wage increases, but returned to work last week after voting to ratify a new four year agreement.

The contract provides for annual wage increases of four per cent in the first and fourth year, and three per cent in years two and three.

The new collective agreement has ended a province-wide strike by about 700 hourly-paid employees, who set up picket lines at all 25 Finning locations in B.C. for five weeks.

The agreement, which covers hourly-paid Finning Canada employees in B.C. and Yukon, expires on April 14, 2015.

The IAMAW members from B.C. voted 74 per cent in favour of ratifying the contract.

In the final tally, 579 ballots were cast, with 428 voting in favour of the contract.

The union organized polling stations in 19 towns and cities across B.C. for members to vote on the new agreement. The voting took place between July 25 and 27, and the union counted the ballots on July 29. Wages, benefits, shifts and sub-contracting were the four major issues of concern for the workers who voted in favour of strike action on June 22.

In the final round of negotiations, statutory holidays became the main issue, as this was the only area where the union could achieve any movement from the company.

New contract language ensures employees are not required to work statutory holidays.

Journeyperson wages will increase by $5.28 per hour over the life of the agreement, with the first four per cent wage increase retroactive to April 15, 2011.

Finning’s previous offer was rejected by employees partly because it required employees to work statutory holidays when the holidays fall on regular work days. Earlier concerns the union had around subcontracting were resolved through mediation.

A total of 700 workers at 25 Finning locations in B.C. were affected by the strike, the first labour dispute the company has had in B.C. since workers organized 60 years ago.

Just Posted

City of Fernie gets curlers back on the ice

City, Fernie Curling Club to share cost of $95,000 refrigeration mats to address leaks

Fernie outdoor rink to open December 17

City approves user fees for private rental of Outdoor Community Rink

Huge snowstorm headed for Elk Valley

Mainroad issues weather event advisory with up to 25cm expected over the next 24 hours

Fernie fatbiking season in full swing

Riders hit the trails on Global Fatbike Day

Fernie man receives federal fire service medal

Kim Sedrovic is retiring from Fernie Fire Rescue after 25 years with the service

Man caught on camera allegedly trying to defraud ICBC

Auto-insurer warns B.C. drivers to record info after crashes

‘People talk about deep sadness:’ Scientists study climate change grief

Some call it environmental grief, some call it solastalgia — a word coined for a feeling of homesickness when home changes around you.

As protectors abandon Trump, investigation draws closer

Cohen was sentenced Wednesday to three years in prison for an array of crimes.

Senate delays start of sittings in new home, delaying start of broadcasts

The Senate and House of Commons are moving into temporary homes for the next decade as a result of long-planned and badly needed renovations to the Centre Block.

UK leader seeks EU lifeline after surviving confidence vote

EU leaders gather for a two-day summit, beginning Thursday, which will center on the Brexit negotiations.

French police try to catch attack suspect dead or alive

Local authorities increase death toll to three, including 13 wounded and five in serious condition

BCHL’ers blanked by Russia at World Junior A Challenge

Canada West loses battle of the unbeaten teams in the preliminary round

Second Canadian missing in China after questioning by authorities

Michael Spavor, founder of a non-profit that organizes cultural-exchange trips to North Korea, “is presently missing in China”

Cannabis gift ideas for this holiday season

Put the green in happy holidays, now that cannabis is legal in Canada

Most Read