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 Association of Western Pulp & Paper Workers
( Last updated Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT)
Safety Survey Results
The AWPPW staffed a booth at the annual safety conference and asked folks to fill out an anonymous survey about safety where they work.  There were 142 people who participated in the survey and the totals are listed under each category of the questions asked. Friday, December 8, 2017 2:33 pm EST

AWPPW Local 675 Members 94% Rejection of WestRock Labor Offer
. Wednesday, October 25, 2017 3:56 pm EDT

Renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) formally begins this August 16 - RSVP to the Portland Town Hall
. Monday, August 7, 2017 6:36 pm EDT

An inside look at how Koch Industries does business

Tuesday, July 11, 2017 4:59 pm EDT

Japan's Nippon Paper to buy US beverage container operation
June 16, 2016 2:00 am JST Japan's Nippon Paper to buy US beverage container operation src=http://asia.nikkei. Wednesday, June 15, 2016 6:26 pm EDT

( Last updated Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT)
Striking bus drivers hold information pickets at schools
Striking school bus drivers conducted information pickets at two Bowmanville schools this morning to provide information and engage directly with parents and students impacted by the work action. “Parents and other community members are incredibly supportive when they hear that the drivers are on strike because First Student refuses to pay for all of the time spent driving the bus,” said Unifor Ontario Director Naureen Rizvi. “Many are shocked to learn that the person they entrust to transport their kids to school safely is expected to work for free.”  The main strikers gathered at the First Student Bowmanville location before sending delegations to St. Joseph’s elementary and Bowmanville high school to distribute information flyers.  The drivers received a warm welcome from parents, students and school staff as they explained that unpaid work and low wages were the basis for the job action. “We understand that this strike is affecting families in our neighbourhoods,” said Unifor Local 4268 President Debbie Montgomery. “The drivers are part of those communities which is why they’re taking the time to speak face-to-face with parents to share the facts.” To view a photo gallery of this morning’s solidarity actions click here. Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT

Help save media jobs now
Unifor members who work in the media sector are urging the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to stop the wide-scale commercial theft that puts thousands of jobs at risk. “Theft is theft and allowing illegal piracy websites operating outside of Canada to stream content they don't own is a job killer,” said Jerry Dias, National President. “We’ve already lost 4,000 broadcasting jobs since 2012.” Unifor is part of Fairplay Canada, a coalition of Canadian content creators and unions that is asking the CRTC to set up an anti-piracy regime to stop the illegal streaming and downloading of an estimated $500 million worth of shows and films. “If everything is being stolen and taken just by downloading it, where is the money going to come from? How are we going to continue to make the projects that everyone loves?” asked Peggy Kyriakidou, a member of Unifor local 700M who appeared in a video supporting the anti-piracy plan. She and other media workers are asking Unifor members to support the proposal by submitting comments here. Some have incorrectly confused the campaign with censorship. The coalition’s proposed  Independent Piracy Review Agency, however, would only block the most blatant piracy sites that operate illegally, overseas and it does not censor all sites. Similar agencies protect media jobs in 20 other countries including Great Britain, France, and Spain. “I build the sets that you see on Canadian film and television,” said Frank Iaccobucci, a Unifor NABET 700-M member and carpenter featured in a video encouraging members to submit comments of support to the CRTC. “I don’t think a lot of people understand the impact that piracy is having on me and my co-workers. We have already seen what happens when employers lose millions as their popular shows and movies are stolen, cuts trickle down, and our members get laid off.” The deadline to submit comments in support of the application to the CRTC at this link is Thursday, March 29, 2018. For more information go to www.mediaactionplan.ca Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT

Strike looms for health centre workers
Sixty- Five members of Unifor Local 229 voted in favour of a strike that could happen as soon as early April if the outsdanding issues with their employer, the Port Arthur Health Centre in Thunder Bay, Ontario, are not resolved. “Only 12 of those have guaranteed rotations and full-time work,” said Andy Savela, Director of Health Care. “The rest are casual. They don’t know their schedules or how many shifts they’ll get. There are lots of opportunities to create permanent work with the hours that exist there” The members, who consist of clerical staff, medical aides, and records department staff, face a shortage of permanent positions and wages below what workers at comparable workplaces earn. Savela also compared their wages to workers at a similar facility in Thunder Bay where workers are earning around $2 per hour more, “and that’s even with the employer’s last offer,” he said. The last meeting with the employer was on March 14 and the employer did not table any new proposals. As a result, the local has asked for a no board report. If the conciliator files the report later this week, the members will likely be in a legal strike position around April 5. The local bargaining committee is working to reach a fair agreement that prevents a strike and ensures good wages and decent work for members. “We’ve extended an olive branch saying if you want to get back to the table and talk we’re open to doing that, but we’re not overly optimistic we won’t be having a strike here,” said Savela. Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT

Hotel bargaining begins for Local 7575
Unifor National President Jerry Dias was on hand to launch the first round of bargaining for Unifor’s new Local 7575, representing hotel workers in Toronto and Mississauga. “As part of Unifor, you will have the full resources of the union behind you, and you will have me behind you,” Dias said as he met with members in the staff cafeteria of the Marriott Bloor Yorkville on Tuesday. “Negotiating collective agreements is the most important work a union does, and I’m glad that after all you have been through, we are at this stage.” The next day, Dias met with workers from the Fairmont Royal York who are considering joining Unifor. He reported back to them on a meeting he’d just had with management at Fairmont, telling the company not to interfere with the workers’ right to choose their own union. “When the company tells you to join one Union, join the other one,” Dias said. Since January, more than 900 former UNITE HERE members voted to join Unifor, which represents 19,000 hospitality and gaming workers across Canada. Dias met with members and the bargaining team for Local 7575 on March 20 to discuss bargaining priorities. Similar meetings are being held at the other hotels represented by Local 7575 throughout March. Earlier this year, workers at the Marriott Bloor Yorkville hotel voted to join Unifor, leaving behind their previous American union that had placed their local in trusteeship. Workers at the Hyatt Regency, Courtyard Marriott downtown, Westin Prince in Toronto and Delta airport in Mississauga also voted to become Unifor members. UNITE HERE placed its Toronto local into trusteeship in January in a dispute over the right of the local to set its own course, including determining the bargaining strategy. It also removed elected officers and seized the local's assets, leading to the effort to join Unifor. Dias told the new members that they are now in a strong union that will work hard to get them a good contract. As Canada’s largest union in the private sector, the union has continually shown to have the experience and influence to support hotel workers in the push for fairness and better conditions. Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT

Sudbury workers and families rally for long-term care standards
Understaffed long-term care facilities means rushed care for patients, say Unifor members and families of long-term care residents in Sudbury. “Our message is that we need regulations when it comes to minimum staffing standards. We're saying that we need four hours of direct a day, per resident; it’s not a lot to ask” said Anne Marie MacInnis, president of local 598.   Community rallies were held in northern Ontario outside Villa St. Gabriel in Chelmsford and the Elizabeth Centre in Val Caron; both of which are in Sudbury. Demonstrations were at two long-term care facilities in Sudbury on March 16 to call for immediate change within the health sector. Led by Unifor local 598, which represents workers at the Mine mill, the action shed light on the need for four hours of direct care for each patient, every day. As indicated by the attendance of relatives of long-term care residents, addressing this issue of minimum standards is paramount for ensuring residents receive the care required for what are often complex care needs of seniors. With health care workers’ current capacity to provide approximately only six minutes of care for each resident in the morning, Unifor launched the six minute challenge in December 2017. The video challenge encouraged participants to try getting ready in the morning within the strict six minute. By participating in the Unifor challenge it is evident that health care workers need more time to fulfill their duties to offer quality care for patients.   Aiming to address this concern, Nickel Belt MPP France Gélinas had proposed Bill 33, the Time to Care Act, which would have mandated that every resident of a long-term care facility receives at least four hours of hands-on care daily. While the Bill passed second reading, the draft legislation died with the recent prorogation of the Ontario legislature by the government.  Unifor represents 9,000 workers in long-term care facilities in Ontario, including both Villa St. Gabriel and the Elizabeth Centre in Sudbury. Along with Finlandia Village and Villa St. Joseph, close to 400 Unifor members work at Sudbury’s long-term care facilities. For more information on Unifor’s efforts on this front, please visit: Care for Ontario seniors. Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT

Nova Scotia Health Care Workers to take strike vote
HALIFAX - After little progress with a conciliator, the Nova Scotia Council of Health Care Unions is proceeding with a province wide strike vote for health care workers. The joint union bargaining committee, made up of members from four different unions including Unifor, NSGEU, CUPE, and NSNU, is frustrated with the slow pace of talks for acute care workers, after seven more days at the table with a conciliator. Talks initially began in October of 2016. The coalition of unions believe it is time to send a clear message to the employers which include the Nova Scotia Health Authority, the IWK Children’s hospital and the Nova Scotia government. After a year of negotiations, the employers have refused to seriously consider any of the union proposals. Nova Scotia’s first ever province-wide Health Care Bargaining Unit strike vote will be held for all 6,500 health care workers from Yarmouth to Halifax to Colchester to Cape Breton. Members of Unifor, NSGEU, CUPE, and NSNU stand united and have agreed to take action in solidarity for all workers seeking fair collective agreements for the four unions, without a collective agreement or wage increase for four years. Each of the four Unions will conduct individual votes with details on locations and dates to be announced soon. Overall the unions share concerns that employers’ continue to propose significant claw backs of benefits for some members. Unifor is especially concerned about an employer proposal that would allow the NSHA to reassign employees anywhere in the province whether the employee wanted to go or not.  The Council of Health Care Unions have set further conciliation dates with the employers for April 10 – 12 and May 2 – 4, 2018. The McNeil Liberal legislation prohibits health care workers from striking until an essential services agreement is reached and this has not yet been negotiated. The Council of Unions presented the employers with a complete essential services plan earlier this month. The employer driven delay in reaching an essential service agreement has limited the unions leverage at the bargaining table. This is all the more reason why a strike mandate is required by all workers. Together with a united voice health care workers can move towards reaching a fair new collective agreement. For more information, please contact Unifor Atlantic Communications representative Natalie Clancy: Natalie.Clancy@unifor.org or (902) 478-9283 (cell)     Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT

Saskatchewan child care plan comes up short
REGINA—The framework announced by the federal government and the Saskatchewan government is a missed opportunity to make meaningful progress on child care, says Unifor. “The lack of a financial commitment from Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe undermines what the federal government was trying to achieve,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “Families in Saskatchewan deserve better from their government.” The bilateral agreement, announced on March 16, is part of the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework. The federal government is securing agreements with each province about how the $7.5 billion in federal funds will be allocated over the next 11 years. Unifor says the Saskatchewan government was happy to take the federal money, but did not add its own contribution to the framework, as other provinces did. “Scott Moe was a freeloader at a federal press conference,” said Joie Warnock, Unifor Western Regional Director. “Although the federal government's contribution is less than needed, the Saskatchewan Party has added insult to injury.” Unifor’s Prairie Regional Council Women's Committee Chairperson Cecily Howe experienced the struggle to find child care first hand. She contacted over 25 centres and day homes before finding a spot for her son. “My experience isn't unique. I've heard from women in my community and my workplace that the Saskatchewan child care system isn't working,” said Howe. “Spots are scarce and expensive. Women are leaving the workplace because they can't find or afford quality care for their children.” For more information, please contact Unifor Communications Representative Ian Boyko at ian.boyko@unifor.org or 778-903-6549 (cell). Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT

Pallister strips more rights from Manitoba workers
WINNIPEG— Unifor is objecting to the sneak attack on workers’ rights in Manitoba after Brian Pallister’s conservative government buried a proposal in Bill 20 to remove equal access to the director of employment standards. “It’s a gutless move to force through anti-labour policies with unrelated legislation,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “Unifor will fight any attempts to undermine working people’s rights.” On its face, Bill 20 seemingly proposes to extend parental leave, but the Progressive Conservative bill also contains an unrelated amendment to strip unionized workers of access to the director of employment standards and gives the director the unilateral powers to dismiss complaints from any Manitoba worker. “Pallister thinks if he turns back the clock on workers’ basic rights, Manitoba will benefit. The opposite is true,” said Joie Warnock, Unifor Western Regional Director. “Fewer rights for workers only creates precariousness in the workforce and incentives to exploit Manitoba’s most vulnerable.” For more information, please contact Unifor Communications Representative Ian Boyko at ian.boyko@unifor.org or 778-903-6549 (cell). Saturday, March 24, 2018 7:43 am EDT


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