AECL Employees Vote to Join United Steelworkers

CHALK RIVER, ON, Dec. 2, 2013 /CNW/ - Close to 900 employees at AECL's Chalk River facility have joined the United Steelworkers (USW).

Members of the Chalk River Technicians and Technologists union (CRTT) voted by a margin of 82% to merge their union with the Steelworkers. The voting process unfolded over a week, with final balloting ending on November 28.

"Our members are facing change," said CRTT President Vickie Hulley.

"As a union we recognized the need to expand resources and capacity to best represent our members. This is an excellent step forward," Hulley said.

The CRTT, which represents members in three diverse bargaining units at AECL, chose the USW as its merger partner through a two-year-long process.

"We initiated a comprehensive search for the right merger partner," Hulley said. "The USW was our choice because of its range of services and its outlook on positive bargaining."

"We are honoured and excited to welcome these hard-working people into our union," said Marty Warren, the USW's Ontario Director.

"Our first priorities will be pending negotiations and how AECL employees will be affected by future changes in the operations," Warren said. "The support shown by CRTT members for joining the USW will help us face emerging challenges more effectively."

Before choosing the USW as its merger partner, the CRTT explored and considered numerous other union as well as other options such as remaining independent or hiring additional expertise on a case-by-case basis when required.

"The USW had the right mix for our members," Hulley said. "It has the right balance of autonomy and the support we need. And the USW history of being prepared for complex situations such as ours is important to us."

The USW and the CRTT will now arrange successorship proceedings at the Canada Industrial Relations Board and then begin preparations for collective bargaining.

SOURCE: United Steelworkers (USW)

For further information:

Marty Warren, USW District 6 Director, 416-243-8792
Vickie Hulley, CRTT President, 613-585-2442
Brad James, USW Organizing Coordinator, 416-524-5118, bjames@usw.ca
Bob Gallagher, USW Communications, 416-544-5966, 416-434-2221, bgallagher@usw.ca


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