ST. JOHN'S, Sept. 19, 2016 /CNW/ - On Friday, Unifor learned that three additional Hibernia offshore oil platform contracts were awarded to new contractors, resulting in 24 people losing their jobs.
This brings the total of new contractors at Hibernia to five, after two other contracts were re-tendered earlier this year impacting approximately 150 people who also have had to apply for their own jobs, some of whom were not rehired. In all cases, long-term employees were laid-off and have had to re-apply for their jobs, despite many employees having decades of experience.
"Unifor strongly believes that our members should be re-hired by the new contractors," said Lana Payne, Unifor's Atlantic Regional Director. "It goes against any sense of fairness and decency that this business practice - allowed because no legislation prevents it - means long-term, dedicated and skilled workers have to reapply for jobs they have been doing for 10, 15 and 20 years."
Some members of Unifor's Local 2121 executive were also among those laid off on Friday. They were employed by contractors who did not win the bids on those re-tendered by the Hibernia Management and Development Company (HMDC).
"We expect Exxon, through HMDC, to play a role in ensuring all of these long-time employees are re-hired. The operator should not be permitted to neglect their responsibility to these loyal workers and the communities in which they live," added Payne.
Payne said it is important that employers, particularly wealthy ones like in the oil and gas sector, are not permitted to promote precarious work environments. Contract flipping results in job insecurity and precarity.
"It is important for people to have stability in their work-life and not be vulnerable to these kinds of ruthless economic games," said Payne.
Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 310,000 workers. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers unions merged.
For further information: Please contact Unifor Communications National Representative: Shelley Amyotte at firstname.lastname@example.org or 902-717-7491 (cell).