Unifor watching Bell Aliant privatization closely

TORONTO, July 23, 2014 /CNW/ - Unifor will be keeping a close eye on the BCE's plan to buy up the shares in Bell Aliant that it does not already own.

"We will be vigilant in maintaining our members' rights as this process plays out in the coming months," Unifor National President Jerry Dias said.

Unifor represents technicians, clerical and other workers at both Bell Aliant and BCE, which today announced a $3.95-billion plan to privatize Bell Aliant. Dias was notified of the move this morning.

Unifor will meet with BCE and Bell Aliant officials as soon as possible to discuss the impact of the move on Unifor members at the two companies. Today's announcement makes no specific mention of job cuts, beyond eliminating what it calls redundant costs.

"We will be discussing just what the employer means by redundant - and any other impacts this will have on workers at the two companies," Dias said.

Dias stressed that collective agreements will not be affected by the privatization, saying the contracts remain fully in effect and that Unifor will represent its members interests to the fullest, while working to ensure that service to the public is not hurt.

"Our members are committed to providing top-notch service to the public, and we will work to ensure that continues," Dias said.

Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 305,000 workers, including more than 27,000 in telecommunications. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union merged.

SOURCE: Unifor

For further information:

please contact Unifor Communications National Representative Stuart Laidlaw at Stuart.Laidlaw@Unifor.org or (cell) 647-385-4054

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