Woodworkers Local Union hopeful for town of Hudson Bay

PRINCE ALBERT, SK, June 30 /CNW/ - The United Steelworkers (USW) local union representing forest workers in northern Saskatchewan says it is hopeful that a return to production of the Weyerhaeuser OSB 2000 mill is a sign of better times to come for woodworkers and communities.

USW Local Union 1-184 president Paul Hallen was responding to the ongoing recall of up to 86 hourly workers at an oriented strand board mill in Hudson Bay, Saskatchewan owned by Weyerhaeuser Company. Workers are returning to the mill on July 9, 2010 after being shut-down since July 2008. At full production capacity, the mill would employ approximately 144 unionized workers.

"We recently sat down with the company and re-bargained our collective agreement and we were very hopeful at that time that the mill would come back on line," said Hallen. "I'm just pleased that these 86 workers will be back on the job because that is not only good for them and their families, but also for the town and surrounding communities."

The northern Saskatchewan forest industry has been hit hard in recent years, with mill closures in Prince Albert, Carrot River, Big River, as well as Hudson Bay.

"A lot of these communities and the families that live in them have really suffered through these layoffs and closures," said Hallen. "I know that we are still in a difficult market, but I am hoping that this re-start will last and that more forest workers in the province will get called back to work."

SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)

For further information: For further information: Paul Hallen, 306-764-4202 or 306-961-0420

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