CUPW has been in negotiations with combined urban services employer Pro-Ex Transportation since February of 2014. We were unable to come to an agreement either through negotiations or the conciliation process on key issues such as wages, relief, hours of work and some health and safety provisions. After 2 days of conciliation with the employer, talks broke off. As of April 14, we are at the end of our 21-day “cooling off” period. The Union conducted strike votes in all 6 locals: Annapolis Valley, Breton, Port Hawkesbury, St. Stephen, Edmundston and Campbellton. Pro-Ex workers sent an overwhelming message to their employer with a 90% turnout and with a 100% yes vote to support strike action if necessary to gain a fair collective agreement.
These workers perform the same duties as many of the Urban and RSMC members, but receive very few benefits, no pension and wages very close to the legal minimum. Canada Post’s system creates bidding wars between contractors that encourages a low wage strategy: Canada Post and the contractor make money, but the worker ends up with very little. As long as we ignore this type of injustice, employers will continue the race to the bottom on our wages.
Our Sisters and Brothers at Pro-Ex deserve to have decent wages and working conditions. Sadly, this employer does not seem to agree. The CUPW has been fighting to get Combined Urban Service members’ fair and decent working conditions, and that is why we will continue to organize with these workers.
We are asking all locals to send messages of solidarity to our Pro-Ex Sisters and Brothers. The Union may be calling on you to do some support actions, so please stay tuned for any updates. Let our Sisters and Brothers know they are not alone!
The Union would like to thank the members of Pro-Ex for their show of solidarity. These workers are taking a stand for respect & fairness; they should be congratulated for their strength and courage.
An injury to one is an injury to all!
Toni MacAfee, Jim Gallant
The Negotiations Committee
Messages of solidarity can be sent C/O the CUPW Atlantic Regional office
7020 Mumford Rd, Level 3, Halifax, NS, B3L 4S9 or Fax 902-453- 6953