TWU-USW JOINT MEDIA RELEASE
BURNABY, BC and TORONTO, July 10, 2013 /CNW/ - The 13,000-member
Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU) and the United Steelworkers
(USW) have commenced merger talks.
"I am pleased that our union's local leaders from across Canada have
voted for us to work toward a merger with the USW that will improve the
working lives of our members and their families," said TWU National
President Lee Riggs.
"This is a great step forward and there is real excitement about the
prospects. There is a real sense of unity in our union today following
the vote of our delegates to start merger talks with the USW," Riggs
"We are excited about what we can build together with the TWU," said USW
National Director Ken Neumann.
"We'll communicate our shared, positive vision for the labour movement:
global, outward-looking, and focused on concrete action. We are
optimistic about the future and we're honoured to work with the TWU,"
Discussions between the two unions aim to yield a tentative merger
agreement that will be brought to all TWU members for approval in a
democratic referendum vote this fall.
The two unions intend the merger agreement to include strong, mutual
commitments in bargaining, education, organizing and legislative
"In this merger process, each and every TWU member has a vote. This will
build a better union for every member. And with the USW's extensive
international network of allies and resources, our newly merged union
can become a global leader in the telecommunications sector," Riggs and
Neumann said in a joint statement.
Merger process details
Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU): 13,000 members across Canada
working for TELUS, Shaw and other employers.
United Steelworkers (USW): 225,000 members across Canada in a widely
diverse range of sectors.
The TWU and the USW have shared a formal strategic alliance since 2010.
In early March 2013, the TWU established a Merger Selection Committee
composed of members of its National Executive Council and local union
The committee conducted a comprehensive assessment process of eight
major unions in Canada, then made a short list of four unions and
conducted lengthy interviews with each.
The committee unanimously recommended to the National Executive Council
that the USW was the best merger partner for the TWU.
Based on the unanimous recommendation from the Merger Selection
Committee, the TWU National Executive Council presented a motion to
begin merger talks with the USW to the TWU Policy Convention, which was
held May 6-10, 2013 in Calgary.
Convention delegates voted to support the National Executive Council's
motion to start merger talks with the USW.
The motion passed by convention delegates contemplates that the merger
agreement will be brought to TWU members in a referendum vote.
The Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU) has a proud 69-year history of representing communications workers and
workers in related fields. We represent 13,000 members across Canada
who work for telecommunications companies like TELUS and Shaw
Communications, as well as workers in related fields.
The United Steelworkers (USW) is a diverse private-sector union with 225,000 members working in every
region and economic sector in Canada.
SOURCE: Telecommunications Workers Union
For further information:
Lee Riggs, TWU National President, 604-437-8601
Ken Neumann, USW Canadian National Director, 416-544-5951
Bob Gallagher, USW Communications, 416-544-5966, (416) 434-2221, email@example.com