Members at Locals 89 and 256 have ratified a new four-year collective agreement with Tembec located in Kapuskasing in northern Ontario.
The new contract meets the pattern established in Unifor’s forestry sector and includes a $1,000 signing bonus, a two per cent wage increase in each year of the agreement, improvements to the salary progression scale, health care and dental benefits as well as bereavement leave. Significantly, language around contracting out and job security have been strengthened through letters of understanding added to the collective agreement.
An important addition to the agreement is funds, for the first time, will be allocated for the union’s Paid Education Leave (PEL).
“The local unions worked hard to win these gains,” said national representative Ritchie Mihalick. “Going forward we are looking at lining up bargaining with the rest of the eastern forestry group.”
The 230 Local 89 members work in the paper and sawmill, while the 80 members of Local 256 are papermakers, running the paper machines. The deal was approved by 82 per cent.