VANCOUVER, May 4 /CNW/ - A new era of stability and openness to women
working at Canada's west coast ports will be ushered in by the new
agreement between the International Longshore Warehouse Union Canada
and the BC Maritime Employers Association that has received wide
support by ILWU Canada members.
"Collective bargaining is alive and working well at Pacific Gateway
ports," said ILWU Canada President Tom Dufresne.
Details of the agreement are being released today following ratification
by the ILWU's membership.
The agreement is based on three main pillars. First, the term of eight
years provides unprecedented stability and reliability to everyone
associated with the Pacific Gateway - ILWU members and employers alike.
"The interests of ILWU Canada members and the employer are aligned when
it comes to having an agreement that delivers reliability and
predictability in the workplace. This is a win-win agreement,"
Second, the agreement includes a new program for maternity and paternity
leave - one of the union's key bargaining demands -- which involves
topping up and extending Employment Insurance benefits.
"Making longshore workplaces more attractive as a place of employment
for women is long overdue. For the first time, longshore workers will
have the support they need as they raise their families. We will now
be more competitive with other workplaces that women have been more
likely to choose because of these kinds of benefits," said ILWU
President Tom Dufresne.
Finally, with the eight year term, the ILWU Canada and the employer have
agreed to a package of wage and benefit increases that will give ILWU
members financial security that is protected by a cost of living factor
in the final three years of the agreement.
The agreements includes an average wage increase of 3.5% every year of
the agreement and a cost of living factor starting in year 6 that will
protect the purchasing power of ILWU members if inflation exceeds the
agreed upon wage increase.
"The agreement will deliver the kind of financial stability our members
need. The employer has also agreed to pension enhancements, a benefit
of great importance to ILWI members," Dufresne said.
Ship and dock foremen in ILWU Local 514 are covered by a separate
agreement which is still under negotiation.
SOURCE International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada
For further information:
Jim Thompson 613-447-9592